Alberni Valley teacher Kama Money is on her way to Rwanda this week, where she will witness Third World poverty first hand and try to make a difference while she’s there.
An Alberni District Secondary School social justice teacher, Money won the Smart Girl contest that is bringing her to Kigali, Rwanda from Aug. 2–11.
Money and four others will be doing humanitarian work with a women’s rights focus, including helping build a girl’s school and participating in classes with students.
“I feel a mix of excitement about the amazing, inspirational girls and women we are going to meet and places we are about to see,” Money said.
“This is going to be quite the ‘girl power’ trip and I know that it’s going to be personally both humbling and empowering.”
Studying Third World living conditions is a staple in the units Money teaches as part of her social justice curriculum.
Seeing things like refugee camps and former child soldiers first hand is something that she considers hard but necessary.
“It’s important for me to witness this, as a Social Justice teacher, but it’s a necessarily uncomfortable thing I have to deal with directly, unmediated by a television screen,” Money said.
This is Money’s second trip to Africa in a year.
She did humanitarian work in Kenya last summer but this trip is different, she said.
Unlike Kenya, Money and others will be travelling to different locations, focusing on empowering girls, and observing existing community development.
She packed for the trip inside of a day, and she had a little help as well.
“My wonderful mother (Laurie Morphett) has been collecting bug spray with DEET, Malaria pills, sunblock, wet wipes etc. for about a month,” Money said.