Education in Nord-Kivu: the hope for a better future

jospin-benekire-enfant-reporter-pbYOUNG REPORTER – I am writing today to inform you about the “Back to school” campaign, organized in the Nord-Kivu Province. Like every year, this campaign is organized at the beginning of the school year, in order to remind parents to register their children to school, particularly those aged 6-7 as they need to start primary school. The prosperous future of our country depends on children’s education, in the quality of their schooling, accessibility to education and teacher’s training. UNICEF and the Congolese have, for a long time, united their efforts to reduce the number of children not attending school.

Primary school should be accessible to all the Nord-Kivu children

This year, the “Back to school” campaign was  launched in Bweremana, one of the districts with the lowest school attendance rates in the Nord-Kivu. This situation is due to the great distance between the schools and the homes, the level of insecurity, and the parents’ lack of means to pay for their children schooling.

We had a chat with Musemakweli, an 11 year old student at the Ngerero PS (Primary School). “My future depends on my studies. I would like to become an accomplished woman, despite my physical handicap and my parents lack of means. Thanks to my education, I’m always trying to adapt and to integrate. I am sure that through education, I will manage to become a great nurse. People often underestimate me because of my handicap. However, because of my studies, one day they will respect me”.

Furthermore, we had a conversation with the district chief. He is very satisfied by the great mobilization around the “Back to School” campaign, as it strives to put all children in school: “I am very happy that one of our schools here is the target for the launch of this campaign. I call for all the population, especially the parents, to register their children in school without discrimination.

There is no bigger gift than education

Back in Bweremana, we attended to the great “Back to School” concert in Goma. This was also a way to transmit the message to parents to register their children in school. All the population feel the ‘going back to school’ rhythm.

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Melissa KAREKE, a singer and “Back to School” ambassador, believes that an education is the best gift a parent can give to their children: ” I am an ambassador of the “Back to School” campaign, and that is only possible because of my studies. If my parents had never sent me to school, I wouldn’t be able to hold myself together in front of this crowd. I call for the conscience of all the parents and ask them to register their children in school, without discrimination because there is no greater gift than education”.

Promotion of children education

We would like to thank UNICEF, its partners and the Congolese government for the promotion of children education.

Us, child reporters, remind everyone that education is a necessity for all children, as the Articles 28 and 29 of the Children rights convention states it. These rights must be applied everywhere, and signing states have the responsibility to promote and respect the Convention. We appeal once again to the Congolese government to make sure that children in the provinces can enjoy a quality education, to make sure parents register their children in school, and to coordinate all available resources to make sure these children enjoy a successful education. We ask as well, to us children, to study. The future of our country depends on our education.

Without education, we won’t have a prosperous future. The hope of our nation lies on our successful education.

More info about education in Nord-Kivu

Translated from French by Gaston Melo Felgueres 

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Jospin Benekire

Jospin a 16 ans et fait partie de la nouvelle génération des enfants reporters de Goma. Il est également le porte-parole du parlement d’enfant depuis 2013. Il veut devenir journaliste international ou avocat des droit humains pour améliorer la situation des enfants. Ce qu’il préfère dans le fait d’être enfant reporter : « faire des articles et des reportages sur la situation des enfants pour renforcer notre plaidoyer et faire comprendre aux décideurs les problèmes ».

Jospin is 16 years old and is part of the new generation of young reporters from Goma. He is also the spokesman of the child Parliament since 2013. He wants to become an international journalist or a lawyer in human rights to improve the situation of children. What he loves about being a young reporter: "make articles and reports on the situation of children to strengthen our advocacy and expose the problems to the policymakers."

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