Hope for his daughter’s future
Davidson is a father of five from Malawi. He’s seen first-hand how access to books has transformed his daughter’s education. This is his story.
I’m Davidson Kabango and I’m a farmer from Tembetembe Village, Dedza District, Malawi. My wife Elizabeth and I have five children.
When I was younger I wanted to be a soldier to protect my country. I had an opportunity to go to secondary school but my dreams failed because my parents couldn’t afford school fees. I dream of having enough money. I wish that all my children should reach far with education, so that they can stand on their own.
My family’s main source of income is farming. We grow maize, groundnuts and sweet potatoes. If the rains are good, we earn some income to provide for our children at home. The challenge that we have is access to finances. This is what prevents us from educating our children even when they pass with good grades. If our children are educated, they will be able to find work and live happy lives in the future.
Education in the past was very different. For me, the ability to access books was difficult. Today, organisations like Book Aid International donate books to schools in need, so we have libraries in both primary and secondary schools. These resources encourage a child to read on their own.
Our daughter Fabiola is 16 years old, and she is still in school. In the past, Fabiola was a poor learner because she didn’t have enough practice.
A child needs to read in order to perform well. If she doesn’t have a chance to read books, that means there is no future.
Since she’s been borrowing books from school, Fabiola doesn’t find difficulties with learning because she has studied. Having access to books has helped her improve her school performance in class and during exams. Me, my wife and our other children even have the chance to read books because of Fabiola. Whenever she borrows books, we can read them too.
Sometimes I summon my children and encourage them to work at their education so that when the teacher asks questions, they know what to answer because they have read the book. My children are growing in wisdom because they understand for themselves.
I felt proud when Fabiola passed her exams with flying colours. The memory of that day is still clear in my mind. I was very happy with the performance because I know that if she continues like that, she will get a job.
Now, when Fabiola comes home from school, she reads to me things that I cannot read.
She told us she wants to do nursing. I am pleased with the news, I also encourage her to get a good education so that she can realize her dream. Her reading brings joy in my heart and I am encouraged that she has a future.
All images © BookAidInternational/SolarAid/ChrisGagnon
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