What is Education – A Poem from Somaliland

Posted Tuesday March 21, 2017 by Adrienne Gregory

What is Education – A Poem from Somaliland

Somaliland has a long-standing tradition of poetry. Some people call it a land of poets. It is in honour of this tradition that we asked our Programme Manager from Somaliland to compose a poem for International Poetry Day.

We asked him for a poem about what education meant to him.

hassan poem

It is a God’s command that mankind should learn
Without education, the world would be an animal farm
It is the founding mother of civilisation & development
The power of education is the biggest capacity to prosper
It is the weapon you can defeat many human enemies
It is the key for livelihood & way out of poverty
It is the tools to eradicate ignorance and prejudice
It is the rays of the day break opening your eyes
It is a blessed new vision and civilisation born
It is the producer of well-behaving citizens of world
It is a thing beyond the boundaries demarked by politicians
It is the door opener for a better life and hope
It means a better life in the world and good paradise hereafter
It is a lifelong supply benefitting you forever
It is wealth that everyone is not fortunate to experience
It is the thing that increases when you give something out of it
It is a God’s instruction that you should pass on it to the others
It is a gift you have to donate as you gain it

By Hassan Ahmed Ibrahim

Hassan Ahmed Ibrahim has worked with Africa Educational Trust for over 20 years. Manager for Somaliland, Hassan is a testimony to the transformative power of education. He grew up herding camels in Somalia and didn’t begin his education until he was 15 years old. Hassan has had a distinguished career in the public and NGO sector. He was also both a producer and presenter on Radio Mogadishu, running some of the first ever radio programmes on Female Genital Mutilation and sexually transmitted disease, at a time when discussing these topics was still taboo.

Hassan has not been unaffected by the conflict in his country. He has been a refugee, having fled Hargeisa in 1991 through the dangerous and difficult path via Ethiopia. But he remains committed to advancing education and even earned himself the lifelong nickname of ‘Embassy’ due to his dedication to reading materials in the American Library in Mogadishu when it was not safe for students to go and read books in Western countries’ embassies. Hassan has particular interests in advancing non-formal education for rural and nomadic people, promoting girls’ education, and supporting the development of national examinations systems.

Full biography of Hassan can be found here

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