Friday, 10 July 2009

Women's Literacy Project

One of the most important means to empower displaced and destitute women is through education because this will help them towards a brighter future. The Women’s Literacy Project actually began in 1997 even before Together for Sudan itself officially began. What happened was that a Sudanese Episcopal priest working with displaced people in squatter settlements told two or three groups of women outside Omdurman to set up classes and Dr. Lillian would pay the teachers salaries! Although he had not consulted her, she felt she had to do it! Since then TfS has graduated over 2,500 women from its literacy classes and in 2007 & 2008 trained 52 teachers in the REFLECT literacy method.

Women’s literacy classes were sometime later set up in the Kadugli area of the Nuba Mountains and nearly 200 women have graduated from three centres there in 2009. Most recently Together for Sudan expanded the project to El Fasher in Northern Darfur where we have trained 14 women as literacy teachers. Despite the difficult circumstances, two classes have been set up. So Together for Sudan has been a pioneer in the field of women’s literacy.
From my point of view as a literacy monitor, the Women’s Literacy Project is significant for building peace and community reconciliation and in empowering women.

In February this year I participated in a workshop in Gadarif in the east of Sudan at which the Director of the National Council for Illiteracy Eradication, Dr. Abdelhafiz, described Together for Sudan as an “unrecognized fighter for humanity”. He said that he appreciated the role of TfS due to its effective efforts to eradicate illiteracy among displaced women. I hope that Together for Sudan will be able to continue this vital project despite the present funding difficulties.

Saudi Abdelrahman
TfS Officer Manager, Khartoum

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