POSTED September 6, 2023
Mariam’s journey: A Ghanaian teenager on the path to becoming a doctor
Empowering the Future: How Education Transforms Lives and Communities
By Danielle Daley, digital community coordinator, Canada
In a small village nestled in Ghana’s northern region resides Mariam, a 16-year-old girl. Her story embodies the strength of dreams and an unwavering commitment to education, even amidst challenging circumstances.
Mariam, the middle child in her family of five, is the daughter of a dedicated chemistry teacher and a father who works in the media industry. Mariam’s standout qualities are her fervent passions and aspirations. She has two hobbies that light up her life: singing and cooking, filling it with immense joy.
Yet, Mariam’s dreams extend far beyond her hobbies. She aspires to become a doctor, a dream she holds close to her heart, fueled by the desire to save lives and make a difference in her community. With unwavering determination, she shares, “I want to be a doctor when I’m done with my education so I can save lives and also build a hospital in my village.”
Mariam’s aspirations are not without their challenges, especially in a world where many girls face unique barriers that hinder their access to education. Child marriage remains a pressing issue in Ghana and numerous other regions, forcing countless girls to prematurely abandon their education, exposing them to violence and abuse.
Understanding the profound impact of education, Mariam emphasizes, “I wouldn’t like anyone to drop out of school because imagine you leave your education and go into marriage, and your husband leaves you one day. You’ll be stranded and not know what to do. So the best thing I would like to tell my friend is that she should continue. She shouldn’t look at the problems or the challenges; she should focus on her education…”
Mariam’s words echo the truth that education is the key to unlocking boundless opportunities, enabling girls to dream big and reach for the stars. She stands as a shining example of what can be achieved when young girls are given the chance to learn, grow, and prosper.
When asked what gift she would give to everyone in the world if she had the power, Mariam’s answer is profound in its simplicity: education. She recognizes the transformative power of education, which has the ability to reshape lives and pave the way for a brighter future. With gratitude in her heart, she says, “Thank you, Children Believe, for supporting children’s education in Ghana. Change is possible, and I’m proof.”
Mariam’s story is a testament to the incredible potential that lies within every young girl, no matter their background or circumstances. Her dreams, fueled by her passions and a thirst for knowledge, serve as a reminder that education is not just a pathway to success but also a powerful tool for creating positive change in the world. With each stride Mariam takes toward her goal of becoming a doctor, she inspires us all to dream bigger and to work tirelessly to ensure that every child has the opportunity to shine.
ABOUT CHILDREN BELIEVE:
Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60+ years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.
About ChildFund Alliance:
A member of ChildFund Alliance, Children Believe is part of a global network of child-focused development organizations working to create opportunities for children and youth, their families and communities. ChildFund helps nearly 23-million children and their families in 70 countries overcome poverty and underlying conditions that prevent children from achieving their full potential. We work to end violence against children; provide expertise in emergencies and disasters to ease the harmful impact on children and their communities; and engage children and youth to create lasting change and elevate their voices in decisions that affect their lives.