The Thing I Would Change if I Could

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If I could change one thing about the world, I would give children more rights and resources in third world countries. Illiteracy is eating away at the future of many children and their countries. Nelson Mandela said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” I can imagine a world where no child dies of starvation, no child is illiterate, or sleeps cradled by despair.

A torn, tattered rag hangs around one child’s neck. His cries of desperation can’t be heard by world leaders because they choose not to listen. The conditions of the refugee camp that he calls home, don’t leave a flickering light at the end of the tunnel. We often speak of our future, but we forget about the children who have that future stripped away from them.

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Education is vital for those seeking change and those willing to make a change. According to UNHCR statistics, out of 25.9 million refugees over half of them are under the age of 18. Therefore, refugees need practical paths to merge into new societies. Education is a fundamental right and a valuable asset for everyone to have, especially refugees. When incorporated into school systems, refugees can learn languages, create lasting friendships, build skills to sustain themselves, and become integral parts of our society. After seeing the horrors of war, a school can become a safe place to learn and play. Education is often a life-saving intervention that offers protection and preserves futures. Regardless of the pivotal role that education plays in refugee communities, it is neglected by aid donors and governments. Only 2% of funding is dedicated to education, resulting in 3.7 million refugee children out of school (Importance of Refugee Education). This has a devastating impact, with children easily being victimized by exploitation or child labor. These children may have lost their homes but they can’t lose their future.

Success is dependent on acquiring the education we need and learning to adapt to unexpected situations with the skills we have learned along the way. By studying Social Sciences and looking through a global lens, I can understand the hardships faced by many developing societies. Studying at Strathcona Tweedsmuir, and getting involved in “Round Square” programs will help me make better solutions to solve these issues. We are sheltered, shielded from some of the things people face. Programs such as the Model UN at STS can help students become advocates. The knowledge and skills I will gain in my years at Strathcona Tweedsmuir will provide a strong foundation for me, and encourage me to continue acts of community service. I will work tirelessly to give back. The fruit of change grows on the tree of education.  

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