Lauria’s Children

Today is the International Day of the African child and for obvious reasons I cannot let it go by unmarked! Since its inception in 1991 by the Organisation of African unity it has aimed to increase awareness of the need for improvements in the education of black African children. It was launched to mark the anniversary of the march in Soweto in 1976 of over ten thousand black students protesting against their inferior education. They were met with guns and violence and 176 of them were killed.

This week as my children struggle with homework and moan about exams, as I complain about bits of the education they are receiving and as we all drag ourselves grumpily out of bed I am biting my tongue. I am reminding myself to be grateful and trying to persuade myself not to take these things for granted.

Lauria in April the 7th village in Mozambique had dreams and plans for her beautiful daughters but they all revolved around one thing…an education.

picture credit: Liz Scarff

Many of the children in these isolated villages receive no education at all. Whole communities club together to send one bright child off to school and that child repays the village by returning with their expertise and knowledge or by sending money home. Education isn’t a given, it is fought for and highly valued.

Monday gave me hope that the world’s leaders are striving to fulfil the Millenium Development Goals.

Goal 2 is to ‘Achieve Universal Primary Education with Target 2.a. being to ‘ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling’.

It is up to us to hold our governments to account and support them as they strive to achieve these goals. Last week the voiceless shouted and were heard because of us, the little people, the people who care and it was an incredible thing to be part of.

Education is the key to so much, it opens so many doors, makes so many things possible. Reading the litereature, it seems unlikely that this goal will be achieved by 2015 but that doesn’t mean it should be abandoned, huge strides forward have been made. We have to keep making noise for Lauria and her children.

It is hard coming home. It’s hard to process everything I saw and heard. I have conversations running around in my head, faces behind my eyelids. I can see the bigger picture and it is huge.

Picture Credit

with thanks to ayohcee whose tweet about the International Day of the African Child prompted this post.


Filed under Mozambique, Pass It On, Thoughtful Thursday, Uncategorized

11 responses to “Lauria’s Children

  1. Oh Christine, I am really enjoying reading your recounts of your time out in Mozambique and that it has been just the tip of the iceberg. This must be such a difficult adjustment period for you, but while you are still fired up; keep going!

  2. Just tell me how I can help.

  3. Excellent piece!

    I completely empathise when you say “It is hard coming home. It’s hard to process everything I saw and heard. I have conversations running around in my head, faces behind my eyelids. I can see the bigger picture and it is huge.” It has taken me three visits to southwestern Uganda to process some of what I see there… and if you ever see my blog, I am still trying to make sense of it all.

  4. We are so very very lucky aren’t we? Very moving.

  5. Christine,
    To read such a well-written piece does reaffirm just how lucky we are with our education system. I can tell you have had a life changing experience but aren’t we so lucky to be able enough to communicate all that we have learnt? Excellent work, I look forward to future reading x

  6. Thank you so much, I shall be writing more, I have lots to say! x

  7. I can not imagine what these mothers feel. I have really enjoyed reading your wise words they really do help to put everything in perspective.

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