At the most basic level, education is learning. Gaining knowledge about something. Ignorance however, is lack of knowledge or information. The disparity between possessing knowledge and its lack is glaringly obvious in the choices made by educated versus uneducated people on any given subject after risk perception and risk tolerance has been considered.
For example, an educated person understands the need for vaccination while an uneducated person may not and could think that vaccination is an instrument used by the government to control reproduction (this is a popular belief in Northern Nigeria). Worthy of note is the fact that Northern Nigeria has the highest rates for the spread of diseases like polio. An educated person may not vaccinate based on their perception of the associated risks of vaccination.
While it is a big relief that the days where only the male child was sent to school in places like South East Nigeria are gone, there is still an existing gap in the education of the female child in places like Northern Nigeria. Education generally is poorest in this part of Nigeria (topic for another day).
There is a common saying…”no knowledge is wasted” and in the rapidly changing world we live in, this statement could not be truer provided of course you are learning the right things (like the place of a woman is not in the kitchen). Investment in educating the female child has proven not to be a waste as we see females crossing lines and breaking boundaries.
Different change models exist, but most of them (the most popular ones like Lewin, 1951) start with emphasising the need to introduce change properly through sentisation and awareness. People need to really understand why they need to change before they embark on the naturally uncomfortable journey of change. In other words, educate people on any subject and you stand a chance to see the positive change you imagine with respect to that subject.
The international community has set this week apart to celebrate women and it is important that people get really educated on what the fuss is about. For example, women empowerment is not equal to male emasculation. It’s about equipping women to be the best they can be.
It might be worth your while if you get schooled on one topic sensitive and specific to your environment or location (within the context of women empowerment).
Lets join hands together in working towards and creating the world/future we dream. Let us learn and continuously strive to learn because change stands a chance when there is knowledge.
It all starts with GETTING SCHOOLED!