This is the winning entry for Restless Development and The Financial Time’s writing Challenge Category A (7-12 years old age category).
In this story, I share my learning experience and that of my friends, and how I think education must change for more girls to stay in school. I learn at Mother Touch Junior School and I am in the fifth grade. My school is half a kilometre away from my home, so I walk to school. After school, my friends Yvonne, Tumelo and Mutsa will be waiting for me so that we study and play.
Yvonne learns at Dzivarasekwa Primary school, a high-density residence in Harare. Her mother cannot afford to pay fees for her at our school. Her school is 4 kilometres away from her home and she walks to school; she is always too tired to play, so she sits and rests most of the time. Mutsa, my other friend does not go to school anymore. Both her parents died of Covid19. She now lives with her grandmother who does not work. I try to teach her some things I would have learnt at school but I have little time and sometimes I am also not sure. She spends the mornings helping her grandmother, selling vegetables and doing chores. Tumelo goes to Tynwald Primary School. She goes to school by bus and her school is expensive. They get served with lunch at school and she likes it at her school.
I wish the four of us could all go to the same school where we could all learn and have fun. The school should be close to home and because of Mutsa, it would be better if it can be free. Then we can all walk home, study and play after school. If education could be free and there are more schools, that could help more girls to stay in school.
This writing challenge is part of Restless Development’s Power Up Appeal, which is raising money to help girls in Sierra Leone go to school, get their education and shape their own futures. Every pound given to the Power Up Appeal until 6 June 2022 will be doubled by the UK Government.
Feature Photo by Laura Rivera on Unsplash