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Over twenty years teaching literacy in South Sudan

Our Facilitators are at the heart of Mothers' Union

06 Jun 2023

Every year on 1st -7th June is volunteers week. It is a chance to highlight and recognise the contribution volunteers make to our communities and say thank you. To celebrate this important day, we wanted to highlight the valuable work of Mothers’ Union volunteers and facilitators worldwide.

Joyce was the first South Sudan facilitator ever trained in 2000, more than twenty years ago. Before becoming a facilitator, Joyce could read in only her dialect. At the very beginnings of the St Luke’s centre in South Sudan, many of the participants didn’t know how to hold a pen. Joyce explains, ‘We just put the blackboard under the tree. We would draw the tree and asked the participants what it was. From the tree we broke the word into syllables. We then broke it down and showed how the words could be formed.”

By breaking the words of their local language into syllables and then even further into the vowels and consonants, the participants could then spread that knowledge across all their other learning. The Bible was used to start discussion and aid in their learning during the literacy circles “…with time they could learn everything, they could write their names and everything.”  


Participants that were part of these literacy circles went on to study at University or to work with the Government with their newfound confidence. Once they had taken the step to improve their literacy, the ASCA (Accumulated Savings and Credit Associations) were also formed. Joyce tells us, “They are still saving and selling things in the market. They have paid for school fees. It has brought so many changes in my country and also myself. “


Our volunteers make Mothers’ Union work possible worldwide at the grassroots level. Thank you, Joyce and all those like her working diligently to improve their communities.


As a facilitator you need to be committed, share the word of God. You need faith and to push them. We must talk well and encourage them in their lives. All this can change the country. – Joyce.