Sunday, March 14, 2010

Let me introduce to you three of our star students: Victor, Natasha, & Regina. Victor is a Form III student, while Natasha & Regina are Form IV students who will be graduating this year. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Human Resources, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade invited Secondary school students to participate in the 2010 SADC (Southern African Development Community) Secondary Schools Essay Competition. With a little encouragement from yours truly, the three of them volunteered. So yesterday I took them to the town library. Victor & Regina had never been there before, but Natasha had. If you are not a member of the library, there is 1,000 TSH fee for the day to use the resources. Many of our students cannot afford to join the library (10,000TSH annual membership), nor can they afford the daily fee. Well, after taking care of the fees, we spent several hours poring over reference books and reports. The biggest challenge for the students was to decipher all the English! Most of the library books are in English, although there are a good number of books in Kiswahili. Here is their task:

STATEMENT: “SADC Member States experience varied degrees of suffering from flooding as a result of torrential rains either within their territorial boundaries or river flows from neighbouring countries but end up without sufficient potable water as soon as the floods subside. On the other hand, other Member States suffer from extreme droughts as a result of insufficient precipitation”.

QUESTION: Discuss how best SADC can harness and better manage this life-giving resource in order to avoid such disasters while ensuring continued supply of sufficient water for all in the SADC region. Discuss further how water can be made available.

They only have 2000 words to save the world – but I know they can do it!

1 comment:

  1. Diane, how did your students do in the contest? This posting reminds me of an interview I recently listened to on The It was with Jimmy Carter & about his project in ridding Africa of this insidious worm that people contract from drinking comtaminated water. The disease is being irradicated by having people wear & using a small water filter around their necks. You can hear it online on I have to say that your blogs are pretty interesting & have made me more interested in Africa.