Three years ago, Rebecca was a defiant 16-year old, training to become a teacher. Tell me, how many 16-year olds would you trust to have the skills to engage classes of up to 200 5-6 year olds, in cramped rooms, with scarcely any resources? Rebecca was one of a few hundred young trainees amused at our horror that punishment for children ranging from caning and “stalking” to digging and then standing on ant hills was the norm. She told us that there was nothing wrong with these inventive ways to discipline a child because after all, she had been beaten as a child and she had survived, hadn’t she? Fast-forward three years, here is Rebecca again: “The knowledge that I have acquired from you (ConnecTeach) will enable me to transform my community and Uganda as a whole. I am going to fight domestic violence, gender imbalance, and child abuse. I am going to fight for children’s rights.”
There is plenty to distress us about the state of our Union and the state of our world. There are days when you just want to bury yourself under your blankets and stay there until the future is not so terrifying. And then Rebecca comes along and tells you that no matter how overwhelming it all is, she will do what it takes to step up. She tells you, lean forward. She shows you the infinite power of one to make a difference. If you think all a teacher does is drill content and ensure that children are “successful” (whatever that means!), THINK. AGAIN. It’s all about shifting attitudes, biases, prejudices, and habits, and this doesn’t come out of textbooks! Thanks to you, our partners and investors in education, we are able to work with young teachers like Rebecca and help her tap into her own potential to become a powerful changemaker in her community. Thank you for working with us to help Rebecca fight gender imbalance, domestic violence, and child abuse.Thank you for working with us in fighting for children’s rights.
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