27 April 2015 - The Eastern Equatoria State Ministry of Education today launched an adult literacy programme in the state capital Torit.
Supported by the UN Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) and the Whitaker Peace and Development Initiative (WPDI), the programme is targeting 80 learners; the majority of whom are female.
The UNESCO Chief in South Sudan, Salah Khalid, said they would support the ministry in providing beneficiaries with literacy classes which will give them better opportunities in life.
“We (UNESCO) believe that education is power and without education you cannot help your child, husband and wife to build your country because you don’t have the (necessary) power at hand,” he said.
UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador and renowned Hollywood actor Forest Whitaker encouraged the learners to make good use of the opportunity.
“With education, you can change your lives, your state, and your country,” said Mr. Whitaker. “By doing that, you are also changing the world.”
Acting State Minister of Education Patrick Lodinga described the programme as a vital opportunity, given the high level of illiteracy in the state.
He appealed to UNESCO to consider extending the programme to other counties so that people who did not go to school would also benefit.
Teachers from the Eastern Equatoria State education ministry have been trained to teach the adult learners.
UNESCO has also been working with WPDI and telecoms companies Zain and Ericsson on other projects to promote peace, non-violence and education in Eastern Equatoria.