How do you tell people what’s on your mind? How do you find out new information–the best new restaurant, the latest international event, or news from your local community? While text messages and social networks are spreading news around the world, word of mouth is getting the job done for Barakat Afghanistan.
Three Barakat students, 14-year-old Nazila, 16-year-old Hajera and 17-year-old Sayera, heard about Barakat’s home-based literacy courses from either their neighbor, their friend, or their aunt. “I have a passion for learning, and that is why I sought information about the literacy course from my neighbors and enrolled,” said Nazila (right). Sounds like, in the age of social media like Facebook and Twitter, word of mouth is still the best way for us to spread literacy.
The girls weave rugs or tend to housework during the day and attend their literacy courses in the evening. Hajera (left) could not go to school when she was younger because her father did not want her to travel a long distance alone to get to school. “Now that the literacy course is centered in my village,” she said, “my father has no objection to my studying there and so I can take classes.”
The importance of education is very clear to the students, who know that literacy will be essential for improving their lives and achieving their dreams. “These courses are really valuable to me,” said Sayera, “because they have allowed me to read and write properly.”
The literacy courses encourage all of the students to continue their education if possible, and many do. Nazila herself intends to enroll in our higher level literacy course, which will give her the equivalent of an 8th grade education.
The students continue to spread the word in their communities about the value of becoming literate, encouraging other Afghan girls to attend school or take courses if they have the chance because they understand the benefits to education, and see the difficulties of illiteracy all around them. “I strongly advise girls my age to study,” said Sayera (right), “otherwise in the future they will regret not pursuing education.”
Help another girl attend one of our literacy courses by making a donation today!