A Passion for Education: Rebecca, Promise, and Sarah's Journey

10/09/17

Last year, three COTN graduates from Malawi—Promise, Sarah, and Rebecca—traveled across Africa to teach at COTN’s school in Banta, Sierra Leone. Just the fact that they are Malawian women with university degrees makes them exceptional. But it’s their courage and their hearts for service that make them truly remarkable.

Rebecca teaching      These young teachers crossed Africa—and fell in love with their new country.

 

“For me to be where I am today,” says Promise, “it took someone to impart knowledge in me. So why should I fail to do the same thing to others who are in great need?”

Traveling from Malawi to Sierra Leone means not only a big change in geography but also in culture. Food, weather, even classroom structures, are all different in Sierra Leone.

 

A taste of Sierra Leone                              The young women adjusted to several cultural changes.

 

But the teachers worked hard to overcome cultural barriers and connect with students. “One of my accomplishments,” says Promise, “is that I have managed to know my students by name and behavior, because at first it was very difficult for me and I knew that was not good. As a teacher I need to know my students.”

 

Promise prepared for classPromise quotes Colossians 3:17 and says: "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."

 

This work paid off. Alice, one of their ninth-grade students, praises their abilities: “They know how to teach. I [understood] them quickly when they taught me. They are good teachers. They help you when you don't understand.”

The young women worked hard outside of the classroom as well. They helped with team sports, a Bible study group, extra lessons after school, and much more. They could relate to the students in ways no one else could because they, too, were COTN children.

 

Days for GirlsSarah helps with Days for Girls training, a feminine hygiene project that keeps girls in school.

 

Wendy Brown, COTN’s International Education Director, says, “Because of their willingness to serve and go where needed, Promise, Rebecca, and Sarah have had a transformational impact on their students, coworkers, and school. We are grateful for their sacrifice.”

What’s more: they all agreed to return to Sierra Leone this year!

 

Malawi teachers with Isata                                  Rebecca, Promise, COTN staffer Isata, and Sarah.

 

Rebecca explains, “Seeing students change had motivated me to see what God is going to do in the next coming year. Change is gradual, and so students need to maintain teachers and develop teacher–student relationships.”

 

Sarah teachingSarah teaching. She, Promise, and Rebecca are excited to return to Sierra Leone for the 2017–18 school year.

 

“We are in love with Sierra Leone now,” adds Sarah, “especially the kids.”

You can sponsor a university student and create more leaders like Promise, Sarah, and Rebecca at cotni.org/children.