EASTERN CONGO–After days of sloshing down muddy, flooded South Kivu roads, Herman has finally concluded the first quarter exams for all 100 women participating in our Gender Equity and Education in Congo’s Coffeelands program.
And the results?
Well, they’re complicated.
The test scores vary greatly. Some women appear to be excelling, quickly mastering the alphabet and numbers. Others, however, will certainly need additional help and guidance along their learning journey.
But these first paper scores– though important monitoring and evaluation tools– only offer a glimpse at the true tests these 100 women face.
According to Herman, some women in the program struggle to arrive to class on time, if at all. His assumption is that disagreements in the household may be to blame. Many students are also survivors of gender-based violence, and carry those scars with them. In fact, before any of our students even stepped foot into the classroom, each faced monumental challenges throughout her life.
And of course, there is still the constant threat of regional violence, illness, scarcity and general danger which pervades the daily educational atmosphere.
Everyone, including our education team, is being tested. Constantly.
And so, regardless of how they scored on their first exam, we are so incredibly proud of our students! And we are proud of our education team for all their dedication and sacrifice which is making this program possible. And we’re proud of our many supporters for choosing to sustaining all these efforts.
Now the questions is how can we continue to improve this program as we learn alongside our students.
For all of us, the testing continues.
If you are interested in supporting the 100 Congolese coffee farming women and their families who are participating in this program, please consider making a gift today. Thank you in advance for your generosity!