By The Inspirer writer.
Factors, including access to Kinyarwanda children’s storybooks and more time spent reading in Mureke Dusome reading clubs, coupled with Literacy Champion’s encouragement, has resulted in several children’s re-enrollment in primary school.
4 children from Kabuga Reading Club in Mbuye Sector, Ruhango District re-enrolled in school after Literacy Champions’ intervention.
Although the children had previously dropped out of school, the boys and girl joined Kabuga Reading Club in 2017.
Inspired by the reading club activities, the children re-enrolled in school in 2018. This was achieved thanks to Literacy Champions’ engagement of children and effective sensitization that literacy is paramount.
According to Gratien Habiyaremye, a Literacy Champion at Kabuga Reading Club, the strategy worked, adding that they also encouraged the children’s parents to send them to the reading club and school to acquire literacy skills.
“Children decided to re-enroll in school after shown the importance of literacy. We told them that having literacy skills will contribute to their economic development and change their fate,” Gratien elaborated.
“My colleague visited them at their home and encouraged them to attend reading club, then they were inspired to go back to school,” added Priscilla.
Mukangarambe, another Literacy Champion at Kabuga Reading Club and Gratien’s counterpart.
The children re-enrolled in P1 and resumed their lessons. One of these children, Audile, 13 years old, should be in Senior One but dropped out of school rather than continuing her studies. Now, she is in P3 and attributes this to the Literacy Champions who encouraged her to attend reading club and to re-enroll in school.
“Literacy Champions encouraged me to go back to school and assisted me with the school uniform and school kits. I am thankful that the reading club improved my literacy skills,” said Audile who can now read and write.
Gratien stressed that children who re-enrolled in school are high performing and dedicated to their studies.
“They are intelligent. Most of them place in the top 5. They really perform well in the class,” emphasized Gratien.
Now Audile aspires to be a teacher so that she can apply her skills and help other children to return to school.
“I wish to be a teacher so that I can encourage children to go back to school after dropping out and sensitize their parents that learning is foundational. If they ignore my advice, I will work with local leaders,” said Audile.
Mureke Dusome reading clubs and Literacy Champions are transforming the lives of children through their interventions. Reading clubs are a fun and safe space for children to develop their literacy skills and set a foundation for lifelong learning.