Meet Barakisu. Her name means “blessed.” She’s one of the volunteers on the mmm-BELLY-may storycrafting team, pictured here getting her certificate after a training session. Even though she’s a full-time student, she works hard with me to craft Biblically accurate stories into her heart language. I haven’t asked her, but I’ll bet she tells them to her mother, who is blind.
The Saturday last year when I took the second picture, we were the first to arrive for a storycrafting work day, so I got to chat with her.
Being a teacher, I asked her about school. Being a teacher, I was horrified to find out that out of the 7 or so subjects she was taking, she could only rent textbooks for 2 subjects that she would be tested on, and she had to share those with two other people.
Of course I bought her books and a dictionary. Her pastor, who is shaking her hand in the top photo, told her that she needed to organize her class of 50 into study groups so that everyone could benefit from the textbooks. She did.
After tests kind of like midterm exams, she came and told me that she passed, as well as 23 other people in her class.
The other classes only had 5 or 6 out of 50 pass.
I asked her pastor how it was that she was lucky enough to be in the most hardworking class that did the best on the tests. Pastor Olivier looked at me like I was kind of dense and said, “It was the books.”
One set of textbooks shared among 50 kids more than quadrupled the pass rate. Priceless.