Sunday, July 13, 2008


Dear DhakaProjectarians,
I am doing fine, back in Germany. Berlin is a good place to be in summer anyway: lots of open-air concerts, chilling in beach bars alongside the Spree river, and interesting people: Barack Obama will come and speak at the Brandenburg gate on 24 July - should be interesting. Nonetheless quite a contrast to my time at the Dhaka Project in Gawair, and still it makes me very thoughtful of what the common Bangladeshi citizen would think of our life here: food thrown away carelessly in garbage bins, not only one car
but 3, kids dressed in clothes worth a yearly Bangladeshi salary - still, I am sure they would think that people look grumpy and are not very friendly with each other a lot of times. Back in Berlin, I also look at poverty - that does exist very openly in Berlin - in a different way. To live in a rich country unfortunately is no guarantee to live a good life. But at least you can be sure that your basic needs will be covered. Still, so many children grow up in certain parts of the city of Berlin totally neglected by parents and society in general. That`s the sad fact: in Germany as well as in Bangladesh and everywhere else in the world, children always suffer most, they are the most vulnerable of a society and rely on our protection. At the same time, they
can't make their voice heard and are often overlooked. An important corner stone of a country's future wasted!
That is why I see as my personal goal in life: to help make their voice heard, to help children unfold their potential and become responsible, happy citizens of their country, who develop a sense of fairness and justice. At the Dhaka Project, I saw even more clearly that education is the only way to achieve a better life for children and break the cycle of poverty. I was very impressed with the staff of The Dhaka Project which works under very difficult conditions. I was welcomed so warmly, and was always well cared for ( I am still smelling the lovely ginger-tea that helped ease my cough - thanks!!!). And the children were amazing: so full of natural curiosity, so keen on getting feedback and attention, not always easy to handle but impressive little fighters in a surrounding that was - except for the Dhaka Project itself - everything but child friendly.
I did what I could within my one-month-stay, of course time was flying. Still, together with the wonderful, and very motivated teachers I started a few things that will hopefully be taken further: we discussed innovative teaching methods to come up with ideas of how the classroom routine can be made more interesting for students. Also, the teachers are now more familiar with children's rights and have - I was sooo happy to receive the pictures!!! - already established so called classroom-contracts that make rights and duties of students and teachers visible. A great result of our teacher's day!
My time at the Dhaka Project was very rewarding in many ways. The children taught me, that you can blossom and grow even in the most difficult conditions: all I can say is, keep on growing! I want to see you live your dreams. And thanks a lot to the Dhaka Project team for making this a wonderful experience. I admire your work and hope that you will be able to help many more children! I will continue to help "change the world" in my way - I know it's going to be a long journey, that's why it's good to know you have travel companions.
All the best and Auf Wiedersehen ( and I really do hope that I will see you again)!


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