Life could be tough at times, and trekking to a distant school every day isn’t funny at all especially when you can’t afford a pair of shoes while your peers can comfortably do. Only such people as Luckia Emmet who experienced that kind of life can understand and feel the need to put shoes on feet of needy kids, let alone girls who are among the largely marginalized in the communities.
On January 17 2017, needy learners, 11 boys and 64 girls from Masongola LEA in Namwera, Mangochi jumped their way home after receiving a pair of shoes each which were donated by their fellow citizen of the district, Luckia Emmet. The donation was made in order to encourage the learners to remain in school and pursue their ambitions in spite of the many challenges they are facing.
The function took place at Masongola LEA School where parents of the learners were also present. Among others, the parents and learners were told about the importance of education and assured them that everything is possible in life with a lot of hard work and determination.
Luckia believes that everyone can help and become a useful and influential person in his or her area by merely identifying people’s challenges and taking them to those who can help.
“In this activity, I didn’t do all the buying of the shoes. I only identified those who were willing to help and connected them to the needy learners or their parents. The donations came from friends and colleagues in form of shoes and cash. I think that’s what we need to do if we can’t help financially,” she told Malawi Muslims Website.
“I am a citizen of Mangochi and from a poor family background. I understand the circumstances in the villages and I passed through the same challenges that these girls are facing, hence I decided to help in whatever way I could,” Said Emmet.
Asked what impact shoes will make on the learners, Luckia was optimistic that the shoes will motivate them to concentrate on their studies and keep them free from infections that come as a result of walking on bare foot, thereby maintaining their health to fully attend classes. It is also expected that girls will no longer engage in sexual behaviours with older men just to get shoes, hence they will be free from early pregnancies and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs).
Luckia was born and raised in Maldeco in Mangochi from poor Yao parents. She went to Koche Model Primary School in Maldeco where she got selected to Malosa Secondary School before proceeding to Assalam Boys Secondary School. She then got her chance to study Bachelors in Education at Chancellor College, a constituent college of the University of Malawi. After getting her degree, Luckia is currently working with Global InterActions as a lexicographer.
Luckia is also implementing a project known as GoGirls in Namwera, an initiative funded by the US Agency for International Development through the U. S. President’s Plan for AIDS Relief, which is meant to prevent the spread of HIV among vulnerable girls from age of 10 to 17 in Malawi, Mocambique and Botswana.