Tuesday, November 5, 2013
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” ― Nelson Mandela
All she wants is a chance. A chance to finish her education. A chance to make a difference in the world in which she lives. She has fought all her life to get to this point, but her poverty will not allow her to go to a teachers college to pursue the career she has dreamed about since she was a very little girl. She lost her parents to AIDS when she was ten. She has lived with seven different relatives, each family only willing to keep and feed her for a year or two. She only found love in the teachers who cared about her and found in her the spark for learning missing in so many others. She excelled in school, had to work almost every minute she wasn't in school to pay for her own fees and uniform. Now, she has a chance. She is one of the newest scholarship students we are sponsoring at Bunda Teacher's College. If she was a public company, I would try to buy stock her in her because she is one driven young woman. She told me I would be proud of her and to thank those in Arkansas who gave the money to allow her to fulfill her dream. It is the young girls who will be among her students who will benefit so greatly from her own dedication to her dream. She wants to be a teacher who loves the way she was loved by her teachers. She will change the world of many poor young girls who otherwise would have no hope. She is hope for the future. She is a gift from God who feels truly blessed. The good people of Cornerstone United Methodist Church are to be praised for giving her a full scholarship (which costs only $250 per year for two years). Arkansas Methodists raise the money, we just administer the funds and form relationships with the young Christians who receive these wonderful gifts. She will be a teacher, no doubt, and a good one. You can see her purpose in her face. She doesn't smile much, I have only seen one, but she smiles when she's teaching, she smiles at her students, and she loves having a chance to fulfill her dream, a chance made real by the gifts of some unknown people in a church in East Arkansas. God bless you and God bless Sylvana as she works and studies.