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Teacher organisation promoting education in tandem with peace

Nov 26, 2014, 9:42 AM

‘A Hand in Education’, an organisation formed by a group of teachers, is in the crusade to promote peace and tolerance in society which they said is crucial if they are to achieve their aim of education for all.

The one-year-old organisation held a daylong workshop in Darsilameh village, about ten kilometres from Brikama, at the weekend on the importance of tolerance and peace building in society.

The training, which brought together a cross-section of the community including students and teachers, was funded by Conscience International, a humanitarian relief and development organisation that implements community development programmes among other things.

Speaking on the occasion, Malick Kanuteh, president of ‘A Hand in Education’, said education can only flourish when there is peace and stability in society.

Mr Kanuteh told the participants that it is the responsibility of all and sundry to ensure peace prevail in society because without peace it would be difficult to have a conducive teaching and learning environment.

He said they want to see that The Gambia develop rapidly.

“But this required the participation of everybody in the maintenance of peace, which can be attained only through appreciating one another in society,” said Mr Kanuteh, president of the teacher’s association whose primary aims include helping students to be educated at least up to tertiary level.

Mrs Awa Mbowe, a teacher who presented a paper on gender in relation to tolerance, said that for peace to be achieved in the community, people have to settle their differences and appreciate each other.

“Without peace there cannot be development,” Mr Mbowe said, adding that religious difference should not serve as hindrance to peace building in society.

She urged the participants to always promote the culture of togetherness in their community and work towards achieving common goals.

Sheikh Tijan Gaye, also a teacher, said forming organisation based on tribal or religious lines within the same society only lead to differences and conflicts.

He reiterated that peace cannot be achieved unless people in society put aside their differences, tolerate each other and show justice.

The officials of ‘A hand in education’ said they don’t want any student to drop out of school for not being able to pay their schools.

This is why every month each of them contributes from their “meagre” salaries to put together to give scholarship to “needy and deserving students”.

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