Time truly flies; before we know it, a year has passed. Why did I sound so nostalgic today? Last year I blogged on the International Literacy Day which falls on September 8 of every year. It was proclaimed International Literacy Day by UNESCO on November 17, 1965. first celebrated in 1966. Its aim is to highlight the importance of literacy to individuals, communities and societies.
I was once a young child who took study for granted and would only want to play all days. And I grew up being a teenager who also took study for granted. However, I never hated studying and I studied hard for my examinations. Fortunately I did pretty well for my school and managed to graduate with a degree.
Looking back now, I enjoyed my study although I might not want to go through it again; I have always remembered the midnight run I had with friends around the campus during the exam period in University. A run after a day of study was always refreshing and welcome for us. I particularly enjoyed the night run as it was almost the coolest time of the day here in the hot and humid weather of Singapore.
I am very grateful and blessed to be given the opportunity to study without having to worry about everyday life back then; I just needed to focus on my study. This is very much the same condition that is given to children nowadays and yet they do not know how blessed they are to be given the opportunity to study. We couldn’t really blame them. I have walked the same path.
What I didn’t know then, “Some 774 million adults lack minimum literacy skills; one in five adults is still not literate and two-thirds of them are women; 72.1 million children are out-of-school and many more attend irregularly or drop out.” And I believe that many more are working hard each day to ‘earn’ their time to study. You and I, we could have been part of the statistics above. However, if you are reading this right at this moment without difficulty, you are probably as blessed as I am. Just for this, it is very good enough reason to be grateful.
Covering the International Literacy Day this year has a greater meaning to me as I take this new journey. As Steve Job shared in his Stanford Commencement Speech about ‘connecting the dots,’ it is amazing how the dots are joining up for me. It seems as if the Universe is pointing me closer and closer to where I want to go.
What I will do today is to share this piece of information with children I am meeting in my new journey and hopefully with this new piece of information, it would inspire change in their perspective towards learning; to embrace this beautiful gift of literacy given to them. It is also my hope that they will go on to share this information with others along their way.
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