Last month we shared the exciting news with you that the Next Steps curriculum has been translated into Swahili! This month we have more exciting news for you: Next Steps is also now available in Kirundi – the official language of Burundi. But even more exciting is the impact this curriculum is already having for educators and community leaders in Burundi.
Edmond is a Social Innovator and educator living and working in Burundi. He has attended Loom’s training events for many years, and after receiving Facilitator’s Training in March 2020, Edmond has been running Celebrating Children Seminars for pastors and teachers in his community.
Since the curriculum was not available in Kirundi, Edmond spent a lot of time preparing for these trainings. “I took so much time translating, thinking about what I was going to say,” he said. “I would read the text, and then summarize it in Kirundi. It was very hard.”
The Kirundi translation was completed only days before Edmond’s next training on July 27th. He was able to have the materials printed for each participant, and immediately saw a big difference in their reaction to the material.
“Participants asked so many questions, we added more time in order to finish the program,” he said. “We started each day 8AM to 5PM…and when we finished, participants did not want to leave the classroom.”
“All the participants were clearly motivated more. We were able to do many group discussions, because every single word we spoke, they had questions and wanted to discuss.”
The 35 participants at Edmond’s training were primarily Sunday School teachers, representatives from three different provinces who will go back to teach more community leaders in their areas. After this training, they insisted that Edmond should come back and conduct more seminars. His network among other provinces is growing.
“As a facilitator, it was not losing time, waiting on translations…which means gaining more time for the teaching,” he reflected. “Everyone had something to input – all the notes were clearly understood, no confusion. This is why I appreciate so much…the work of translation.”
For Edmond, this weekend served as another confirmation that his mission is to do more than teach, but to be a voice of advocacy and engagement within his community.
“In my heart, I’m feeling like it is time to stand up,” he said, “and to fight for the rights of the children.”