Meet Our New SHINE Teachers in PoP Laos!Team PoP August 10th, 2012
Meet our new SHINE teachers in PoP Laos, and learn about their strong passion for education…
There is a new energy in the PoP Laos office: we’ve recently hired 11 new SHINE coordinators, growing our small staff from 20 to 31 in a matter of days. Over the past 3 weeks, our new staff, which consists of 7 men and 4 women, of which 6 are Hmong and 5 Khmu, have been training hard to learn the new SHINE curriculum for the upcoming school year. In September, they’ll be taking all of the hard work and skills that they’ve gathered from our teacher training into our PoP schools to teach the students and community all things SHINE.
The funny thing is, most of our new hires are not teachers and very few have actually taught in a classroom before. During training, when asked why they wanted to teach, the response was not the generic “because I love kids” but an emotional confession of their past –of poverty, of education being passed to an older sibling, of teachers who laughed at them, of being bullied, of feeling like they weren’t good enough.
At PoP, we believe that passion is more important than experience and our staff have time and again proven us right. We hired these teachers not because they have a long resume filled with teaching experiences; we hired them because they’re passionate and sincere about their own education. They come on time, they’re not easily distracted, and they listen to each other. We’re giving these individuals a chance to do the things that they couldn’t do or didn’t have a chance to do before. In the wise words of Martin Momodo, our Teacher Training Coordinator, “Someone who understands how precious it is to be given a chance will hopefully give others that chance too.” And that, for me, is the meaning of empowerment.