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Blog post written by Sara-Christine Dallain the Co-Executive Director at iACT.

"I hope we become leaders," Mouna, 21-year-old Little Ripples teacher, camp Kounoungou.

At the end of May, I’ll be returning to refugee camps Kounoungou and Mile along with two of my iACT teammates. Here we will work with the Jesuit Refugee Service education team and the refugee camp coordinators, education directors, teachers and cooks who have been managing the Little Ripples programme since October of 2017.

As on previous implementation trips, seven experienced Little Ripples team members will be joining us—including Little Ripples programme coordinators, education directors, teachers, and cooks—from two neighbouring refugee camps in eastern Chad. These team members have been running Little Ripples in their camps and will travel to assist us in teacher training and surveying families. An important part of the Little Ripples model is empowering refugees to lead and expand the programme.

We’ll be leading another Little Ripples teacher training, the final in a series of three, designed to gradually equip and prepare the teachers with the knowledge, skills, confidence, and experience to lead and sustain the programme in their community. Teachers will further be equipped to scale the programme and become the trainers of early childhood education teachers. The third training will focus a lot more than previous trainings on leadership development and teacher training practice.

Over the past six months, the Little Ripples education directors from camps Kounoungou and Mile have reported 100% enrolment, with 45 children per Little Ripples Pond (in-home centres), and a 95% attendance rate. During training, we’ll ask the women to share how they’ve been successful in enrolling children and in maintaining such a high attendance rate.  We will also discuss any challenges they face in addressing the unique needs of every child attending their Pond.

Little Ripples Pond in Mile camp, eastern Chad. Credit: Sara-Christine Dallain, iACT.
A Little Ripples teacher training in progress. Credit: Sara-Christine Dallain, iACT.

In preparation for the trip and the Little Ripples training, I have Mouna, a 21-year-old Little Ripples teacher in camp Kounoungou at the front of my mind. During our second Little Ripples training in November 2018, Mouna said, “I hope we become leaders.” Her words have stayed with me.

Following the third training, my hope is that Mouna, and her peers, feel they have or can become the leaders they aspire to be.

Visit www.iact.ngo/updates to see daily blogs and photos during our upcoming trip.

Photo caption: Little Ripples teacher demonstrates how to engage young students in identifying and learning emotions. Photo credit: iACT

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