Authorities Call for Increased Investment in Adult Literacy

Community Development authorities in Mzimba have called on non-state actors in the early childhood development programs to consider supporting adult literacy education which faces numerous challenges such as lack of teaching and learning materials due to low funding.

Principal community development officer for Mzimba South Topsy Kachere made the remarks Thursday during the commemoration of the adult literacy day in the district.

He said for example, the department gets 6 million Kwacha a year which cannot cater for all activities.

Said Kachere; "There is a need to invest more in adult literacy education, more partners have to come in and support this program. Government is doing a lot but there are very few partners."

Kachere added, partners feel that investing in adult literacy is a waste of resources as such, they prefer funding early childhood education instead.

"Most partners think that it is a waste of resources to invest in adult education but they forget one thing, that these children are coming from households where the environment might not be good for these children to be educated. So if we support adult literacy we also compliment Child education," he said.

Chairperson for the Mmbelwa district council Evans Ndhlovu said illiteracy is high in the district hence the need for the council to channel more resources to adult learning. 

"Most of the communities in the district are illiterate so as a council we must do a lot to ensure that they are literate. You know educated people are the ones who can take part in development activities of the council" he said.

Over 1000 adults, mostly women have graduated from adult literacy classes in the district with men shunning the program due to shyness.

One of the women awarded with a certificate after undergoing adult literacy classes Kettie Jere implored the government to ensure payment of teachers at adult literacy centers is done in time to motivate them.

Said Jere; "At first I did not know how to read or write, but now I can even read English words. I can also read the bible, even my business is going on well now because I am able to do simple arithmetic to know whether I am making profits or not."

The day was commemorated under the theme 'Transforming adult literacy learning spaces'.

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