Understanding Education, The Kofi Annan Way. Freedom, Democracy, And Sustainable Human Development
Koffi Annan famously said: "Education is a human right with immense power to transform. On its foundation rests the cornerstones of freedom, democracy, and sustainable human development." This is a very profound statement, emphasizing the significance of education, not as a functional tool but rather as an instrument for change.
The transformation intimated by the former United Nations (UN) secretary-general refers to a metamorphosis not only of the mind but also of the soul. In this respect, he was speaking of the influence education can have on what is humane in us. Such a transformation has the potential of creating more cohesive and integrated societies which embrace multiculturalism as a matter of principle. The prospect of achieving that kind of transformation is also shared by Kecher. We are a group of professional and student volunteers from around the world, committed to sharing our experience and perspectives with young people and of promoting education and mutual understanding, especially in rural areas of Africa, through mentorship programs, community exchanges, student exchanges, and monthly webinars on higher-education opportunities abroad.
Koffi Annan’s idea of human development reminds us of the human capital required to serve the needs of the public, with a focus on sustainability. Such development can be achieved by ensuring that education, in all its varieties, helps advance the quality of human life.
Kecher supports this view and the role that mentorship plays in creating all-round individuals who are shaped not only by their formal education but also by a broad understanding of the world beyond that contained in books.
Education ought to be value-laden, ensuring that students are not only taught math and practical skills but also the importance of diversity, equal rights, mutual understanding and sharing opportunities. Embracing values and ideals like democracy through education means a deeper and more nuanced understanding of them. Such values are what bring us together at Kecher; a non-profit organization that connects volunteer mentors from all over the world, from a wide range of fields and diverse backgrounds and life experiences.
The former UN secretary-general’s words are inspiring and remind us that education is indeed powerful enough to change society. Education is not monolithic but multifaceted. Kecher is committed to sharing our diverse views with the world, promoting inclusiveness, understanding, and opportunity, by engaging especially with young people in rural areas who often feel detached from global trends and opportunities. Well-informed, value-based decision-making is critical for each individual and for society as a whole, in the realization of a better tomorrow, today.
Cite this document as Kecher, Understanding Education from the Kofi Anna Lens, Vol 1 of March 2022, Japan. This publication does not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of Kecher, concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.