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Tanzanian women begin journey to literacy at CMF training

Estha, a 35-year-old woman in Tanzania, can’t read because her father did not allow his daughters to go to school.

Hereni, 36, was required by her parents to tend the family’s herd of goats from an early age so she didn’t have the chance to learn to read.

At 26, Neema is also illiterate because her father believed only boys needed an education.

These three Tanzanian women, pictured above with their husbands, have always been ashamed because they can’t read. But their lives were forever changed recently by CMF team member Joann Noel's literacy course at the Tanzania Training Center in Arusha.

“These women were at the church planter training with their husbands,” explained Joann, “and their husbands were part of my course that teaches those who are literate how to teach others to read. I was able to spend time with the women periodically throughout the week of my class.

“Within four days, these ladies learned how to sound out and write the five vowels, one extra letter and to recognize four easy-to-read words,” said Joann. “It was so gratifying to see the look of pure on their faces at these first steps of success.”

Now their husbands have had literacy training and were given tools to use to teach others.

“I encouraged them to make their wives their very first students!” said Joann. “This was one of my biggest challenges in the course, but also the highlight of my week!”

Arusha, church planters, Joann, literacy, Mike, Noel, Tanzania