Inter-Community Children’s Assembly Meeting
posted by: RAINS on September 16, 2019
Inspiring One Another
As part of the Community Action and Support for Education (CASE) project’s measure to create spaces for children to participate in influencing the ending of child labour and other forms of abuse and to promote the fulfilment of their rights at household to District levels, the CASE team, on August 23rd, 2019, organised an Inter-Community Children Assembly meeting at Nayorku. The created platform, where assemblies from four communities under the Project, were brought to interact together – Daboya, Loagri-Kulua, Nayorku, and Shellinvoya. The goal of this assemblage is for pupils to share ideas and their success stories to other pupils, teach each other about ways to improve their communities, how the Children Assembly functions, and how to use it to their benefit.
Azum Mariam is a student from the Nayorku community, she has been a beneficiary of previous RAINS project in her community that piloted the Children Assembly concept platform for children participation and advocacy. She recounts how in 2015, she, as the President of the Children Assembly in her Community, and her team requested for notebooks and RAINS was able to provide it, and the team would use those notebooks to take notes during their Children Assembly meetings where issues like teenage pregnancy, its causes and ways to prevent it and others were discussed. She continues to share how being a part of the Children Assembly team has increased her confidence in public speaking, having the knowledge on how to avoid teenage pregnancy and peer-pressure.
She had the opportunity to go to the District Assembly to interact with the District Chief Executive to raise issues surrounding child exploitation and got a donation to help her cause.
She spoke to her peers and wanted to inspire them to accomplish what she was able to, and more. She tells them,
“First, you have to take your studies seriously, so that you are able to achieve whatever you want, no matter how hard it is, and one day you can achieve your aim… To my dear girls, I was telling you about the occurrence of teenage pregnancy and how it was in my community. So, as you are part of the Children Assembly, don’t let any man come in your way so that you drop out of school as a result of teenage pregnancy. You have to abstain from all sexual intercourse because abstinence is better than using protection, because it is not a 100%.”
She continues to tell her peers not to refrain from standing out, to be the best version of themselves and if they want to achieve what they want, they must stand out. She says that succeeding in life also comes through being respectful to your friends and family. Don’t chase after the small things and toys, invest it into your future, buy books, read, and learn. Lastly, she recommends being patient with yourself, know yourself, know what you want, and stay focused.
Azum Mariam completed high school with distinction and is now applying to go to university. RAINS has been ecstatic in seeing her grow and become the inspiring young woman she is today. Not only has her success within our projects assisted her, but she wants to ensure that it can assist others.
RAINS wants to improve the quality of education by reducing the economic and socio-cultural barriers that prevent children from attaining quality education. Our aim is to enable a safe space for students from different communities to come together and discuss issues they face, how they can overcome them, and share their achievements. We hope this assembly empowers the students to be drivers of change in their own communities, like Azum Mariam.