On the way to 2017!

 In Enko Blog

Dear readers,

As the students and teachers in the northern hemisphere are now back in class after the holiday, and those in the southern hemisphere prepare for their return to school, it is time to wish you all the very best for this new year that is just beginning. We hope that 2017 stands out in your memories as being successful, rich in accomplishments and full of joy.

We also hope that 2017 is a year of growth for all elementary, high school and college students, during which you will discover more about yourself, your talents and how you can contribute, each in your own way, to your own future and that of the world in which we all live. You are the future, and this is particularly true in Africa, where young people aged below 15 represent 41% of the population of the continent (more than half of the African population aged below 25).

Our wishes extend to the entire education community: parents, management and teaching staff. You are the cornerstones upon which the future of our young people is built. You are responsible both for ensuring their daily well-being and for guiding them in their choices, in a world that is not always easy. You are the solid foundations on which these children and young people can build safely, and gradually begin to grow. To paraphrase the wonderful Ubuntu philosophy, so beloved of South Africans: “they are, because you are”. May you continue along this path with courage and kindness during 2017.

In conclusion, and to inspire you for the year ahead, I would like to leave you with this beautiful letter written by Albert Camus to his teacher, Louis Germain, some days after he received the Nobel Prize for Literature. This letter demonstrates the importance of education, and shows that a teacher’s gentle hand and willingness to listen can make all the difference in the life of a child…

19 November 1957

Dear Mr Germain,

I let the commotion around me these days subside a bit before speaking to you from the bottom of my heart. I have just been given far too great an honour, one I neither sought nor solicited. But when I heard the news, my first thought, after my mother, was of you. Without you, without the affectionate hand you extended to the small poor child that I was, without your teaching and example, none of all this would have happened. I don’t make too much of this sort of honour. But at least it gives me the opportunity to tell you what you have been and still are for me, and to assure you that your efforts, your work, and the generous heart you put into it still live in one of your little schoolboys who, despite the years, has never stopped being your grateful pupil.

 I embrace you with all my heart.
Albert Camus

 

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