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12/20/2012

We don't need no education


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Haiti.
80% of people live under the poverty line.
More than 90% of schools are private. They are mainly religious, and without control on what is teach to children.
Compare these two figures; it would explain you a lot about Haiti.
Education is obviously one of the main key to rebuild this country. It is even perhaps the only genuine path, which would take generations though.

Over the last decades very few Haitians have enjoyed a good education. This lack of education can be felt on daily basis. Through the very few people able to speak another language than Creole, and sometimes French for instance. Or through reactions or questions from people we meet.

Here are some excerpts of discussions we have had over the last few weeks. They are proper words of Haitians we work with. Of course they are only examples and all our discussions are not as amazing. But it could give you a sense of what is the reality in terms of education.

-Boss, is Denmark a cold or hot region of France?
-It is quite cold during winter, but it is not a French region, it is a country by itself.
-HO ! really? So why do people go there instead of France?
-Perhaps because they live there, no?
-Ha, ok. And Cameroon, is it a hot or cold region of France?

In Haiti, JEN works only on education through hygiene promotion or community development. Yet what gives more sense to what we do here is the time we spend with staff debating, discussing, explaining; most of the time out of working hours. This is not reported to donors, they would not fund such non-formal education, at so small scale, anyway.
But this is one of the best parts of the humanitarian job.
This is one of the specifics of a genuine humanitarian NGO.

December 20, 2012 in Haiti |