samedi, mars 14, 2009

What does poverty alleviation mean for students in Pointe-Noire?

We continue with the presentations and discussions on the themes of the Earth Charter with youth in schools in Pointe-Noire, Congo. On 4 March 2009, the students of the Secondary school Raymond Mountou were visited by the project team. For the second time these students were happy to participate in the discussion on poverty alleviation.

The theme developed by Davy Hermann Malanda entitled: alleviating poverty by financing access to drinking water, healthcare, education and welfare for the poor.

Students whose age ranges between 13 and 17 years participated in the session by answering questions asked by the speaker. Like the student Loumouamou Cédric, 4th class, who has distinguished himself by his willingness to answer questions but also by the accuracy of answers given. So for him poverty is "to be deprived of livelihood," before saying that "water is that you can drink without danger."

The motivation of these children allowed the speaker to continue easily develop his theme by showing the relationship between poverty, sustainable development and also raised awareness for the children to participate in sustainable development.

Again the children showed their interest by asking questions such as:
- How one could have access to drinking water?
- As young people we are concerned about sexuality, how to prevent HIV/AIDS?
- If we don’t take drinking water, are we not exposed to diseases?
- What are the causes of poverty in Congo?

At the end of the discussion, some students shared their views on the project. Thus they found it important as dealing with issues they have never heard as students, they affirmed "it is for the first time that such activity takes place in our school. We are getting new understanding of the issues that affect us in our daily lives.”

“We have never heard of sustainable development, but now we know what it is this jargon. Such sharing should continue to make us more responsible to ourselves and towards the environment," shared a student.

These students had many ideas for micro projects that the project will help them implement. Some wanted a library, including a tap, more toilets, hoes and brooms to clean the courses and classrooms, others are garbage bin, and other palm trees grow in the fight against the erosion that threatens their school.

Extract from the report of the project using the Earth Charter as tool for activism for youth.

Roméo Mbengou
reporting from Pointe-noire

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