Women’s empowerment: teaching English and life skills

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VIN believes in empowering women through education. This week, a local volunteer and a British volunteer have been conducting beginner English classes to women in the Goldhunga community.

The students are extremely motivated, having begun their English- learning journey with the previous Austrian volunteer.

The classes begun with getting to grips with the alphabet and numbers one to ten. The students then learnt to write the numbers in words, as well as learn simple vocabulary such as “A is for apple, B is for ball”. This introduced them to basic concepts of the sounds and how to read in English.

Students played toss the ball to learn to count quickly up to 100. This was a big achievement for many students in the class. The volunteers also taught simple addition and subtraction in English.

The next lesson introduced some key vocabulary of body parts, through the song “head, shoulders, knees and toes”. Then came the time to revise the numbers learnt in the previous lessons, by answering questions such as “How old are you?” and “How many members in your family?”

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According to UNESCO only 44.5 percent of Nepali females are literate, compared with 77.6 percent of men. Many women have not received an education or at least a good quality education. Learning English is an opportunity for them to increase their self-esteem, as well as providing opportunities for the future. Knowing numbers and simple maths and English can make a big difference in terms of using computers and other technologies, and being to start economic activities such as running a small business.

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