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Sunday, October 24, 2021

Quest For Education Sends Old People Back To Class

The quest for education has seen elderly men in Kilifi County enrolled in adult education classes at Kwa Upanga area to enable them to read and write.

Illiteracy is one of the problems affecting the region, contributing to the high poverty levels.

Lack of education according to authorities has led to elders reportedly receive life-threatening letters, but they would keep them thinking they are from their children. 

In those efforts, an NGO called Million Footprints, brought solar panels and installed them at Kwa Upanga Baptist ECD Malindi, bought stationery for the elderly to begin the evening classes.

Already 12 men have enrolled for the program with many others expected to follow suit. 

One of the volunteer teachers Priscah Mapenzi from Kwaupanga Baptist ECD said classes begin from 2 pm then another one from 4 pm to 6 pm and another one from 6 pm to 8 pm.

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Speaking to journalists who visited the learning institution, Ms  Mapenzi thanked the Million footprints for installing solar panels to enable evening classes.

“This is a good project which will help our community in the area as both the illiterate and those who went to school will be able to transform their lives by being able to read and write even letters,” she said.

She said that there have been cases where an elderly person got a letter threatening to kill him at night but because he could not read he keeps the letter in the house only to end up being lynched.

The teacher said she decided to volunteer so as to help them acquire knowledge but the major challenge is the night classes which require to be handled by a man because she has a family to take care of.

“The solar we received will help the adult students to learn at night as there are those who go to work and return home late in the evening and still want to learn,” she said.

One of the learners, Jonathan Kazungu alias Marura (50 years old) said he joined the adult school last month and is happy to learn how to read and write even though late.

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He said previously he could not operate even a mobile phone but since he started learning he can now make calls without any difficulties.

“Because we have responsibilities we have to go to work in the morning the whole day and by evening we go to class, since there is solar even though it’s dim and we are old but at least we are able to learn,” he said.

Shauri Wanje Ziro 45 said he also used to have challenges in operating a mobile phone and even counting money.

Mr Ziro said at times he would go to the shop and be given the wrong change because he did not know how to count the money.

“Since I joined the classes I can now operate a ph0one, I know how to count numbers from start to end, I am, not an expert but at least I have the little knowledge from our teacher who is teaching us well,” he said.

He called on the sponsors to continue supporting them with learning facilities so as to enable them to acquire the knowledge at the school. 

*This article was written by Ramadhan Kambi for Uzalendo News.  Email: uzalendonews24@gmail.com to submit your story.
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