English DiaryWhat Can I Do?
「What Can I Do?」
There should be nothing special about going to school and learning many things.
However, more than 260 million children in this world would say otherwise. Whom formany unfortunate reasons, cannot go to one, and even have no access to notebooks and
pencils. Aren’t all children have the right to be educated equally? I ask myself.
I came to think about helping such children because of the following experiences.
First, when I was in 8th grade, my teacher showed me and my classmates a video about the children who instead of going to school are working in a cacao plantation. They had no choice but to work because their families are very poor. When interviewed, they expressed their desire to study and dreams of becoming doctors or teachers. At that time, I realized how lucky I am to have parents who prepare everything I need for school and provided me a good environment for studying.
Also, almost at the same time, I have learned about Malala who advocates for women’s right to study. I thought this girl is so brave to express her thoughts in a society as oppressive as hers. This was the first time for me to feel I want to do something for such children like Malala.
Second, during my high school days, I had a lot of opportunities to participate in different kinds of forums. One of them was the URA Forum (Understanding, Respect, Accept) in Australia. At this event, I have met a lot of people who have various backgrounds, and discussed world issues with them. My group focused on education I have learned that some countries do not have schools, or even if they have, they are not a favorable environment for learning. It was a shocking realization. Moreover, a couple of months ago, I participated in the International Forum in my school. That time, I discussed child poverty with students who came from other countries. I found out that the cause of poverty in every county is related to the lack of education. “What can we do?” We asked ourselves. We all agreed that we should share our time with the community. The following day, we went to the food bank and helped out in packing food to be distributed to impoverished places. It was hard-work. But volunteering made me feel good.
Before I participated in those forums, I did not realize how big and challenging it is to address the problem of education. But the problem is so big and so severe that there’s no way that I wouldn’t do anything. I just need to do something, no matter how small it is.
Third, as a school project, I was made to think about rebuilding my town. Nine years ago, the North Eastern part of Japan- where I was born and raised, was hit by a huge earthquake. This has left a lot of places in my area severely damaged. Many have lost their lives. Our high school teacher made us think about some ideas on how to rebuild our town. It was primarily heartbreaking for my classmates seeing how big the damage was. But I believe we all have to do something to move forward. For my part, I thought about the reconstruction in terms of education. Children at school should be taught about the importance of bonding with the local community and that life is precious. Back in Australia, some students and I made an illustrated book for children at the hospital. Since it was in English, creating it was very difficult, but it was for children in the hospital, so I did not give up. This activity gave me a stronger desire to work with children.
Through these experiences, I came to think that I want to be involved with an organization that helps children in developing countries using education.