Pierce Elementary Students Respond to the Need for Female Education


Pierce School Students at the Literacy Walk

The presence of Pierce School’s 6th grade students and their families, wearing Barakat’s bold orange T- shirts and carrying banners as they walk full of spirit, was an exciting sight at Barakat’s Walk for Literacy this past October.  The students were happy to be part of the event as they knew it was for a purpose which was dear to them–helping those who are truly in need with the knowledge that their support can bring a change.

These committed students have played a vital role in the success of the Barakat’s Literacy Walk in 2008 and 2009.  Not only did a large number of students participate with their parents and teachers, but the group also raised more than $8000 dollars!

It’s easy to wonder why 6th grade students from Brookline, MA would choose to raise money for women and children on the other side of the globe.  What does the Walk for Literacy mean for these students?  How do they believe they are helping education around the world?  Read the students’ answers below to learn why they took up the cause with such passion.

What is Barakat’s Role?

Arthur, a 6th grade student, defines Barakat’s mission as “a non-profit organization which is helping to educate women and girls in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. Every cent that is donated to Barakat, goes to help and to build schools for girls”.

Why Walk for Literacy?

Isabelle shared her opinion on what inspires her to work for the literacy walk: “One day a lady from the Barakat organization named Arti came to our school to speak about Barakat and girls and women in Afghanistan. We were all inspired by what she said and we were horrified by some of the facts she told us. We decided to split into three groups to help Barakat raise money. They include fundraising,  advertising, and understanding Afghanistan. Together we are trying to get people to go to our walk, the walk for literacy.”

How to Help Walk for Literacy?

Thea of class 6L shared her views: “I know I’m doing it for a good cause. I know there are many people who aren’t as privileged as me. It feels good to be helping others. I feel very lucky to have the education after learning about the girls in Afghanistan. So I decided to do the walk. My goal is $100, I’m walking 5 miles. I hope my money goes a long way. If I am able to raise $100 I will be able to send 2 girls to school for a year.

Abby, a fellow student, says, “I think it is really good idea to do the walk to help people in Afghanistan get education. My goal is to raise $50 over the registration fee of $25. I also want to get a couple of people to sponsor me, so I can raise as much as possible. I hope a lot of people go and help raise money for the girls in Afghanistan.”

Jason tells us “I’m excited as I’ve done these kind of walks before to raise money and help the cause. My goal is $100. I think others should also come do the walk.  It will be fun and a lot of Pierce students and teachers will be there.”

On the Walk Day – The View from 5 Miles: By Cierra

“The crowd was getting larger as more people were coming. After everybody settled down with their food and coffee the founder of Barakat started making speech. The first people he thanked were the parents, teachers and students of the Pierce School. While he was talking it seemed that everybody’s eyes wandered over to the Pierce School banner which our school had designed to represent who we are. After the speeches we headed on our walk. About 1/5 through the walk it started raining but the people were determined to finish. Soon in the distance I could see the Barakat sign hanging on arched entrance. I was happy that I competed the 5 mile walk, but my feet were KILLING ME! When we arrived, we were greeted and congratulated by the other walkers.”

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