February 11 found the sandy, dusty courtyard of Centre Salisa school bustling with people, all come to see new student leaders share about the value of clean water. While a live band played students and parents, school staff and official guests settled in to their chairs for live performances by Centre Salisa students.
The fete de presentation showcased the 5th, 6th and 7th grade classes new leadership skills and knowledge gained from the Giving Back to Africa Clean Water Curriculum. Class by class and as a group, students sang and presented poems and sketches of their own creation. The dramatizations are the student's first forays into community service activities to address problems of clean water in the Mpasa community.
By presenting their knowledge students practice leadership skills for solving community problems. Even preparing for the fete students used their new skills to identify problems and solutions to common issues around water. Grounding the leadership in practical activities like demonstrating good hand washing behavior and actively protecting water sources from contamination both practices leadership for change and enacts change. Reinforcing the presentation, students, parents and onlookers received locally made bars of soap.
After reaching over 300 people at the fete the 5th, 6th and 7th grade classes move into the Mpasa community with community service projects of their own design. The students continue practicing leadership while seeking to solve community problems.
The fete was attended Dr. Jean Fidèle Ilunga, representing the Health Ministry. Dr. Ilunga congratulated and thanked Centre Salisa and Giving Back to Africa for our engagement and efforts to increase the level of education at Centre Salisa. He has asserted his commitment to advocating on our behalf within the Health Ministry.
The Clean Water Curriculum is the first module in Giving Back to Africa's youth empowerment leadership program for long-term community change in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Thanks to Bralima Foundation for providing drinks, Danielle Anderson, Giving Back to Africa Country Director, and Dr. Jerry Kindomba, Giving Back to Africa Project Manager for shepherding the clean water curriculum to this major milestone.