In 2009, Africa ELI began sponsoring Edina. That year she was the Head of Health Prefect for her high school class. In 2010 she became the Academic Prefect. What does an Academic Prefect do? She takes attendance in her classes. But not student attendance. She monitors the attendance of the teachers! She submits reports to the school headmaster and the director of studies identifying which teachers have attended class and taught a lesson.
In 2011, Edina achieved her goal of completing a high school education. When asked about the highlights of her secondary school experience, Edina talks of being able to “speak very nicely,” write, and of having good friends. She said the best part of school has been “gaining new knowledge.” Her next step is to figure out how to become a nurse, or maybe a clinical health officer in the county. She said her mother is “so happy” that Africa ELI was able to offer a sponsorship to help get her to this point. Edina’s father died in 2003. Without assistance, it’s likely that Edina would have only managed to complete primary school. Now her prospects for a better life have vastly improved.
Edina (photo 1) and her cousin, Phillip, (photo 2) both graduated last year. A girl and a boy from the same extended family reaching a milestone like graduation will be celebrated for years to come. We have high hopes that Edina's little sister, Annette, (photo 3) will one day become a high school graduate like her sister and her cousin. That is bridging gender gaps through education.