Thursday, September 29, 2011

Student Profile: Papa Evarist Kazembe Kafunda

I am 66 years old and father to 11 children, most of whom completed their studies before I joined Kamina Methodist University. For survival purposes, I have been relying on small scale farming. This experience has helped me to become the District Agronomist in the North Katanga Area.

One day that I was watching TV, the minister of education argued: “In the present time, all intellectual people without any knowledge of computer sciences are being considered illiterate.” I was in charge of such an important domain of development, that is, agriculture, animal raising and fishing, and I was very much frustrated when I received a computer in my office, and was asked to use it. That is why I finally decided to come back to college, regardless of my age.

There wasn’t any computer technology around in Kamina except at Kamina Methodist University. So this university is worthy of honor because it is the only one in North Katanga which is organizing computer sciences. I would like to thank the people called United Methodists for investing in education even in a rural post conflict setting such as Kamina in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
It was not easy to make such a decision to begin studying at the university at my age. I was not given much chance of graduating but I have done it. People were asking me how information technology could be useful in the domain of agronomy.

In addition, this knowledge will help me to better manage my domain, and also to train other agronomists responsible from each territory, i.e. Kamina, Kanyama, Kabongo, Malemba Nkulu and Bukama; how to use computers as a manager.

Since I am studying at this university, my impressions are only positive. Teaching is well organized and we also had a lot of practice every time that we needed it.
When people talked about computers to me for the first time, for me it sounded like magic and I could not even dream on using it one day. But after practice, I realized that everyone could use a computer without any trouble.

My being at this university has also been a kind of sensitizing others, and I will keep on telling people to do as I did, for nothing is difficult when you have hope.

The academic authorities are very respectful people who treat all the students with much care and love.
Kamina Methodist University is bringing peace to the community by training even former child soldiers. This institution needs computers and other library resources necessary for the education of many young men and women. Today I’m proud to be among its first graduates and I’ll always advocate for the liberation of many young men and women who were victims of the civil war and violence we experienced in the DR Congo.

Education is key to bringing peace and development in Kamina, North Katanga, and the DR Congo.

This story is also found on the GBHEM website:
http://www.gbhem.org/site/apps/nlnet/content3.aspx?c=lsKSL3POLvF&b=4916405&ct=11238805

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