One popularly known secondary project Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) hosts is Camp GLOW (Girls and Guys Leading our World). This is a special camp hosted once a year in the capital Windhoek, where approximately 35 learners across the nation are selected to attended. Globally, girl's rights and education is being recognized as a critical area of need and concern. Awareness to such topics are being talked about across many age groups, with a lust for change wanted by several across any gender identity. Let Girls Learn (as commonly known) was the stepping stone to the creation of many such programs and camps in Peace Corps programs around the world. Here in Namibia, we have GLOW. In this 1 week camp aids the learners in developing positive leadership skills and gaining confidence to be advocates in their community for gender equality. I would like to state that I am not one of the volunteers involved in GLOW, but last year I did have 2 learners selected to go, and they loved it would be an understatement. They came back from camp glowing. This year all volunteers were again granted the opportunity to nominate 2 learners to potentially be selected.
Well, this year one of my grade 10 learners got selected to attend camp!
"NJ" is a very special learner to me. This kid works so hard! He's always one of the very last learners to leave school because he's always pushing himself to study hard. He is such an optimistic guy. Some may consider his position rough, but he considers himself blessed. NJ just has a pure joy for life. He's mature beyond his years always looking out for his brother. And some how between all his hard work and paternal nature he still makes time to be your typical 10th grader playing soccer and feeding a new love for jig saw puzzles and Harry Potter. He has definitely given me a new perspective on life.
I was so happy when I recieved the email notifying me he had been selected that I jumped up from my chair in the Peace Corps office and instantly printed a copy of the email and list to show NJ. I couldn't wait to tell him! The following day when NJ walked by me sitting under my favorite tree I told him I had something for him to read. He first read over the part informing us that only 1 of the 2 learners had been selected before even looking at the list of selected names.
"Madam, I don't understand so only one of us can go?" NJ asked
"Yes, NJ it will only be one of you"
With a slightly concerned he looked at the first page again, then back at me and asked "Well, which one of us will go?" So I told him he would have to look at the list on the next page to find out.
He looks at the list for a moment.
"Ms.Tena, thats my name!!"