On the Western bank of the River Nile, resides 12 year-old “Aly” with his four siblings in Minya governorate.
Unlike most students his age, Aly is impressed with the developed standard of his school and the improvements it has witnessed since the beginning of “My School and I” project; “In our school you hear no cursing, you see no sexual harassment or gender based violence, girls are just equal to boys.”
Aly believes external maintenance was all that was missing for his school to be perfect; “The buildings were very old and dull; we wished they could look better and we approached our principle, and she promised she would consider our request but had no funds.”
“My School and I” project started working on the dream of Aly and his colleagues; painting the school’s façade, equipping it with the needed tools, and maintaining its facilities, the school totally transformed.
The project’s activities are not limited to this; it also aims at fostering a safe environment for its students, and educating them about protecting their bodies from any harassment they could be subject to.
In addition, the project works on improving the students’ leadership skills through including them in extracurricular activities, and improving their reading and writing abilities through readability classes.
Aly speaks about his favorite learning method which was newly introduced by the project in his school; the study groups.
The method depends on dividing the students into mixed groups of both weak students and top achievers; this stimulates the weak students to improve and gives the top achievers an opportunity to help their colleagues, creating a motivational and cooperative atmosphere among the students.
In these study groups Aly has helped three of his colleagues improve their reading and writing skills.
As a pro-active student and a member in the school’s student union, Aly decided to take an action towards achieving his colleagues’ will of introducing new sports activities at school.
He took the initiative and delivered their will to the school’s administration, and together they started working on arranging football tournaments and introducing new sports such as volley ball, which qualified him to become the sports secretary at the students’ union.
According to Aly, the best thing about working in the school’s student union is working on improvements and witnessing people’s satisfaction afterwards;
“I am overjoyed when I hear people complimenting our school and its achievements, it’s the perks of being part of the students’ union. I love my school and I wish the whole city is as developed and beautiful as it is.”