as told to Adriana Ermter
Benigne, 12 years, Karugira Primary School, Kigali, Rwanda (Photography by Terence Babb)
"Because we go to school, girls can be whatever they want to be. We can pick; I get to choose."
I like school because I get to see my friends and I get to learn. My classes are so much fun and my teacher is giving me the skills I need to help me achieve my dream.
My old teacher just wrote our lessons on the chalkboard. It was very boring and I didn't care. Plus, I'm a girl and girls don't have the right to talk in class. We can't be decision makers. But now, girls like me have the opportunity to go to special schools like this one that has Right To Play-trained teachers, so we have to take advantage of the situation and study hard so we can get an education.
"I'm going to be an optometrist. Many Rwandans have problems with their eyes and I'm going to help them. It's why I'm happy that I get to come to this school; it's much better than the one I went to before."
My new teacher helps. He starts every class with a game. It puts me in the mood to learn - I'm learning math, English and science faster now, because they're fun. The games help me. I'm learning how to cooperate and I can explain things, like how I'm feeling or if I don't understand.
"I never used to say anything in class, but I like participating now, because I want to listen to others and to help them."
Sometimes, when I have a problem at home with my family, I think about a game and remember what I learned. When I do that, I can approach my mother easily and talk to her about my problem. That's my favourite thing about school: learning the lessons. Because we go to school, girls can be whatever they want to be. We can pick; I get to choose.
Girls like Benigne are changing the world for the better. With your support, we can help more #GirlsLead!
In 2015, Right To Play launched the Play for the Advancement of Quality Education (PAQE) program with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through Global Affairs Canada. Active in eight countries, PAQE uses Right To Play's experiential learning methodology to build teacher capacity and remove barriers to education to improve learning outcomes.