Thanks to his education at Mali Rising's Sue Chung Chiu Middle School, Sadio is a young man with a plan. And a backup plan.
At just 18 years old, Sadio is a graduate of Mali Rising’s Sue Chung Chiu Middle School in Simidji. Sadio is in his second year of a three-year electrician technical training course in Bamako. He credits the construction of Sue Chung Chiu Middle School for where he is today.
“Before Mali Rising helped us, students walked to study in Ouelessebougou, which is 12 kilometers from Simidji,” says Sadio. “Our parents do their best, but many [of us] ended up dropping out of school to become unskilled labor. Having classrooms built right in Simidji made it easier to stay in school.”
Sadio will take his electrician graduation exams next year, and he is confident he will succeed. “…I trust myself and I have good grades,” says Sadio.
After his studies, he would like to be in electrician. This is a good trade in Mali, where unemployment can be a real problem -- especially for young people. Unemployment for young people in Mali hovers around 11%, but some studies suggest that rates of underemployment may be closer to 50%. Some argue that a vocational training program like Sadio’s provides even better hope of employment and a living wage than a University degree in Mali these days, so he is hopeful he will find work.
But Sadio is very practical when it comes to his future. Although being an electrician is his dream, he has a backup dream. He says if he can’t be an electrician, “…I would like to be a policeman to protect the population of my country.”
Sadio isn’t all about the future though, he’s also enjoying being young, in a big city, and in school. He lives with his uncle and his extended family of 15 while he studies in the huge capitol city of Bamako. Each day he walks to school with his best friend, and they discuss the importance of their studies and what their futures will bring.
We’re so glad the family of Sue Chung Chiu donated a school in Simidji to give students like Sadio a chance to dream and a chance to literally build Mali into the thriving country it will be. You can help too.