Search
  • Saetanar

A Small School That Transformed The Villageみんなの学び舎が村を変えた

Updated: Jul 27

Burgundy jacket is the expression of parents’ love for children

 えんじ色の上着は保護者の愛

Nyo Mee village is located about 20 minutes away by taxi from Taunggyi, the capital of Shan State. This area had been a battlefield between PNO (Pa’O National Organization) and the then-government army. In 1991, autonomy was granted to this village in exchange for signing the ceasefire agreement. Pa’O people, who wear colorful cloth around the head, still live there. They grow corn and raise cows for a living. They have lived in this same village for generations. They are peaceful people and keep their tradition of sending children to the monastery’s Sunday school for ethical education.

I walked toward Nyo Mee School hearing the cheerful sound of gongs and drums, and as I entered the schoolyard, I was greeted by the children neatly lined up in two rows, all singing to welcome me. On top of white and green national school uniforms, they wear burgundy jackets that are hand made by their parents. As this region is located high in altitude, the jacket keeps them warm against the cold climate. The burgundy jacket is the expression of adults’ affection for children.  シャン州の州都、タウンジーから20分ほど車を走らせたニョーミー村。約20年前までパオ民族機構(PNO)と当時の政府軍の戦闘が続いていたこの地域は、1991年に停戦に合意した代わりに自治区となった。今も、色鮮やかなタオルを頭に巻いたパオ族が、トウモロコシを育てたり、牛を飼ったりしながら暮らしている。先祖代々この村に住み、日曜日には子どもたちが僧院で道徳を学ぶという伝統を受け継ぐ、穏やかな人々だ。

 シャンシャンというドラや太鼓の音に導かれるようにニョーミー学校に着くと、校庭に二列に並んだ子どもたちが歌いながら出迎えてくれた。全国共通の白と緑の制服の上に羽織っているえんじ色の上着は、保護者が作ったものだという。標高が高く気温が低いこの土地ならではの大人たちの愛情だ。

"They wear burgundy jacket that are made by their parents"

I approached the school building walking between the rows of children. A lovely building! The green tin roof and the light-pink walls look so pretty on the red soil of the school ground. Outdoor shoes are strictly prohibited in the classrooms. The floor is impeccably cleaned and on the walls are many sheets of calculation charts with pictures of animals and plants.

We can feel that this school building is truly loved and used with care.

 列の間を校舎まで歩く。正面に現れた建物は、緑色のトタン屋根と淡いピンク色の壁が校庭の赤土に映えてかわいらしい。教室は土足厳禁。床は掃除が行き届き、壁には動物や植物の絵が描かれた算数表などが一面に貼られている。深い愛情が注がれ、大切に使われていることが手に取るように伝わってくる。


Promote school attendance through school building construction and community development

校舎建設とコミュニティ開発で就学を後押し

Nyo Mee School originally opened in 1951. Since then, this has been the sole school in this village that people send children for many generations.

But the old school building that was more than 60 years old, was no longer a suitable environment for study; rusted tin roof, termite-damaged pillars, and broken concrete floor polluting the classrooms with dust. However, the village could not afford to construct a new building. So, the village saw a great opportunity when Saetanar offered to support community development through school building construction. Although according to Saetanar’s rules, the foundation cost was to be borne by the village, and the village people were to play a proactive role in construction work, no one had any objection. The members of the School Building Committee collected 6,000 Kyat (approx. 420 yen) from each household in 6 installments, as well as allocated construction work to each person. “We were happy to help building our school,” said the village people looking back.

The new building was completed in 2015 and then started a new micro-finance project using the fund of 6,200,000 Kyat (approx. 430,000 yen) provided by Saetanar .

Saetanar makes it a rule to support community development together with school building construction; as this policy enables people to send their children to school. This way, a new scheme started; the village provides loans to the villagers at as low as 2% interest for half a year. The money can be used to expand family business such as agriculture, and at the time of repayment, the interest portion is allocated to cover the school operation cost. So far, out of 330 households, a cumulative total of 313 households got loans from the village under this scheme during the last 9 periods.

One of the parents says, “Before, we borrowed money from the crop dealers, so we had to sell our products at unreasonably low price. But now we can sell our products anywhere we want.” Others say happily, “We used to travel out of the village every time we needed to borrow money from moneylenders, and the interest rate was over 5%. But now, loans are available right here, so we do not have to travel and the interest rate is much lower.” Another man got a loan of 1,000,000 Kyat (approx. 70,000 yen) and purchased fertilizer. He says smiling, “I feel good as I know my interest payment is used for the school. Not like before.”

 ニョーミー学校の開校は、1951年に遡る。以来、子どもたちが代々通う、村でたった一つの学び舎だ。

 しかし、築60年を超えた旧校舎は、勉強に打ち込める環境とは言い難かった。トタン屋根がさびたり、柱がシロアリに食われたり、コンクリートの床が壊れて土埃が舞ったりしていた。それでも自分たちで建て替える余裕がなかった村にとって、学校建設を通じて地域の発展を支援するセダナーから支援を受けられるのは願ってもない話だった。基礎工事の費用は村で負担し、建設作業にも主体的な参加を求めるセダナーのルールに異議を唱える者はなく、学校建設委員会に選ばれたメンバーが、1軒あたり6,000チャット(約420円)を6回に分けて徴収したり、作業を割り振ったりした。「学校のために喜んで協力した」と村人たちは振り返る。

 新校舎が2015年に完成すると、セダナーが提供した620万チャット(約43万円)を原資にマイクロファイナンス事業が始まった。学校建設を支援する時には、コミュニティ開発も併せて支援し、子どもの就学を後押しするのがセダナー流。こうして、村が村人に半年間、2%の低金利で資金を貸し、農業など家業の拡大に役立ててもらい、返済金の利子を学校運営に充てる仕組みが立ち上がった。全330世帯のうち、のべ313世帯がこれまでの9期の間に村から融資を受けている。

保護者の一人は、「以前は農産物の仲買人からお金を借りていたため、収穫した作物を安く買い叩かれていた。今は作物を好きなところに売れるようになった」「高利貸しから借りていた時は、都度、村の外に出かけなければいけなかったし、利子も5%以上取られた。村の中で貸し借りするようになって出かける必要がなくなったし、利子が安くなってありがたい」と喜ぶ。また、村から100万チャット(約70,310円)を借りて肥料を購入したと話す男性も、「これまでと違い、払った利子が学校のためになると思うと嬉しい」と、頬をゆるませる。

A teacher who came back to her old school has a dream

故郷で教える教師の夢

The introduction of the micro-finance project not only improved the village’s financial situation. It also strengthened the bond of the villagers who had always been friendly with each other. “The village is responsible for money management. Because we trust each other, everybody repays the loan on time and we never argue over the use of our fund,” assured a parent. It has been decided that the interest collected in repayment is to be used for the whole village, so decision-making goes very smoothly at the regular meeting held between the new moon and the full moon. “Let’s build a new concrete wall on the schoolyard.” “We also need to construct a middle school building.” “We should provide accommodation for teachers.” The villagers have so many improvement ideas and suggestions for their school.

"to raise the children who will contribute to the village"

The teachers have the same feeling. Nang Aye Zu, who was born and raised in this village was the first to attend the University of Education in Taunggyi. She became a teacher and taught at a few other schools, then came back to the village 5 years ago. Her wish is to raise the children who will contribute to the village. She applies the “Child-Centered Approach” that she learned at the university, and tries different improvement methods to deepen children’s understanding. As she has 9 years’ experience as a teacher, she is now entitled to be promoted and become a middle school teacher if she wants, however she is determined to stay in the village and contribute to her village.

In the classroom, second graders were learning the Burmese alphabet. Children’s voice repeating after the teacher was echoing around the school building. At that moment, I saw the sun coming out between the clouds and the sunshine coming through the window. I was convinced that the future of this school-centered community development is bright.

 マイクロファイナンスによって変わったのは、村の懐事情だけではない。以前から穏やかに仲良く暮らしていた人々の団結力が、これまで以上に強まった。「資金管理も村で行っている。信頼関係があるからこそ、皆、きちんと返済するし、得られた収入の使い道で揉めることもない」と保護者の男性が力を込める。利子は村全体のために使うと事前に決めており、新月と満月の晩に開かれる定期会合でも意見はすぐにまとまるからだ。「学校の敷地にコンクリートの柵を立てたい」「中学校の校舎を建設したい」「教員用の住宅を整備したい」――。皆の母校をより良い学校にしようと、夢は広がる。

 学校への思いは、先生も同じだ。この村で生まれ育ち、村で初めてタウンジーの教育大学に進学したナンエイズーさん。教師になって幾つかの学校で教えた後、5年前に母校であるニョーミー学校に戻ってきた彼女の願いは、「村のためになる子どもたちを育てる」こと。大学で学んだ児童中心の教育(Child Centered Approach)を実践しつつ、子どもたちの理解を深めようと、日々、工夫を重ねている。教師になって通算9年になり、希望すれば中学校の教師に昇進する資格を得たが、この学校で教え続けて村に貢献するつもりだという。

 教室では、2年生がミャンマー語の文字を勉強していた。先生の後について声を揃えて復唱する子どもたちの明るい声が校舎に響く。それにつられたかのように太陽が雲の合間から顔を出し、窓に日差しが差し込むのを眺めながら、学校を中心にした村づくりの未来が明るいことを確信した。

34 views

+95 9421117713

  • Facebook
  • Instagram

©2020 by Saetanar