EXTENDING ADULT LITERACY SKILLS INTO OUR COMMUNITY

Nourish, started and run by Sarah Bergs, is a non-profit organization focusing on growing resilient communities through education and sustainable, integrated projects. Having recently started adult literacy classes Sarah approached Natalie McFarlane, Tanda Tula’s Human Capital Development Manager, to ask for some guidance and help as the adult literacy classes she runs at Tanda Tula have been so successful. We also have the idea in mind that hopefully one day, going forward, we can grow a symbiotic relationship between Nourish and Tanda Tula where everyone can grow, share information and support everyone. 

Nourish classroom

QUESTION: How is the experience of teaching adult literacy at Nourish different to working with the ladies at Tanda Tula?
 
NATALIE: "I think the biggest difference for me is that, when I started working on the adult literacy at Tanda Tula, I came to learn (often through trial and error) what did and didn’t work, and how many of
the resources available are not actually suited to adult learners from under privileged communities. We have created many of our own resources and through that process, we have found what we feel works best. I will be taking much of that acquired knowledge across to Nourish, so having that previous experience feels quite different and exciting! Also, my involvement at Nourish will essentially be very different compared to my usual role in the Adult Literacy classes at Tanda Tula. Tenyiko is the lovely and very passionate teacher who runs the Adult Literacy classes at Nourish, so my role is more of a mentorship role for Tenyiko, as our shared goal is that eventually she can manage the classes on her own." 
 
SARAH: "I think Tanda Tula Education Foundation and Nourish working together allow for the women engaging in the various adult literacy programs the opportunity to interact and get to know each other, realising that growth in education cannot happen in isolation. This joint venture exposes the women in the Tanda Tula adult literacy program to the rural community context and vice verse, it gives the Nourish adult learners the chance to meet and engage with women in tourism, perhaps even offering them the idea that there are tourism opportunities out there. I think with the mutual focus on education and by working together we can broader and deepen awareness and have a greater impact."

QUESTION: Where do you see the benefits of cross pollination between Nourish and Tanda Tula Education Foundation?

NATALIE: "Nourish is an incredible organisation which provides opportunities, education and sustainable development practices to the surrounding communities. We know that developing a relationship with them will further inspire the adult literacy students and assist with the valuable work we do already at the Tanda Tula. During the time that we assist in developing Nourish’s adult literacy classes, the Tanda Tula students will have access to the incredible library at Nourish. This amazing building is made entirely out of eco-bricks and stocked with a wide variety of books for readers of all levels and ages. Not only will our students be able to visit this beautiful space, but also have access to all of the books and resources there which will be a fantastic advantage to their learning."

SARAH: "Tanda Tula Education Foundation has run a successful adult literacy program taking people from zero comprehension to reading. This has been accomplished over years and carries a wealth of experience. Nourish would benefit from this experience as we create and set up our own adult literacy program at the Nourish library in our the eco village. We can learn how best to structure a program, see what works and how to use limited resources. We can lean on the learning of Natalie and the Tanda Tula program to make our journey into adult literacy as positive and productive as it can be for the women and grannies involved."

QUESTION: What are you most excited about in developing a relationship between Tanda Tula and Nourish?

NATALIE: "Adult Literacy comes down to sharing knowledge with our peers and equals, in order to empower them. To watch our adult literacy knowledge being shared for the benefit of other members of our surrounding communities, to watch our reach of education and empowerment spread - that excites me immensely."

SARAH: "I worked at Tanda Tula almost 10 years ago and have now run Nourish for 9 years, for me the most exciting thing is for these two worlds to come together. For a foundation started by Tanda Tula to help support Nourish's dream of adult literacy in the rural community is absolutely amazing, but also to have the support in community growth and learning makes the journey less hard and lonely."

Sarah teaching students


Natalie helping Sarah

Sarah teaching

Tanda Tula Tanda Tula Tanda Tula