Back to school

EducationLivelihoodsEgypt

Sadiki is a young woman who, like many others born into poverty in Egypt, did not receive an education. But after joining classes provided by a Tearfund partner, a whole new world was opened up to her. It was just in time, too: with her new skills, Sadiki was able to save her husband’s business from disaster.

Many children dread going back to school, but Sadiki* used to dream about it. She longed to be able to read, write and do basic arithmetic, but poverty kept holding her dreams back. ‘I felt jealous of people who were able to get an education,’ she tells us.

Thankfully, help was at hand. During a community meeting, there was an invitation for people to join basic literacy and arithmetic classes, organised by Tearfund partner Think and Do, with help from local volunteers.

Sadiki happily joined the classes, but her husband Gamal* was jealous and stopped her from attending. He didn’t want his wife to know more than he did. To placate her husband she agreed, but inside she was crushed.

Arithmetic to the rescue
One day it came to Sadiki’s attention that her husband’s business was in trouble. He owned a small grocery shop in the village, but it was losing a lot of money. She asked him about, but he couldn’t offer any explanation.

Sadiki visited the shop and, after looking over the numbers, realised that some of their suppliers were exploiting her husband, taking advantage of his ignorance of maths.

Gamal asked her to support him in reviewing the shop’s finances, and she was able to fix many of the problems. He realised that Sadiki, even with her very limited education, had been able to save his shop.

A better life
He felt deeply sorry and humbled, and from then on they attended the classes together.

Sadiki’s dream for an education came true. She’s now incredibly happy, and every evening she helps her children with their homework. Her husband, meanwhile, can now look after the shop finances with confidence.

‘We thank God that we have Think and Do in our village,’ says Sadiki. ‘It has given us the opportunity to live a better life.’

*Names have been changed to protect identities.



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Gideon Heugh

Gideon is a copywriter in the Global Brand and Communications team. When he's not wrestling with the muse / his keyboard, you will often find him traipsing up a mountain or burying his head in a book.

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