Give Me Three Cups of Tea, Please
‘Three Cups of Tea” is an outstanding book about the volunteers in the education area. Its author, Greg Mortenson, talks about the challenges he has faced while building schools for illiterate children in Pakistan and Afghanistan. New York Times appreciate this volunteering experience and its expression in a form of literature by awarding the book as a non-fiction bestseller. Well, what do we know about that?
How it all began
Greg Mortenson lost his sister as she passed away and left him shattered and broken. To express his deep respect, he went abroad intending to tackle the second highest mountain in the world, K2. He knew he had enough physical strength to do that… But something had gone astray. Walking up and down the mountains he was thinking about what happened to his capacities. Indeed, what had stopped him from reaching the new height?
Unexpectedly, he saw several children in the near distance. They were sitting on the hills with the books.
What are you doing? — Greg was so interested. But he got even more curious after he found out the truth.
All those kids were from a poor village nearby. Every two weeks the presiding elder would invite a teacher from the neighboring village to come teach the children. Sadly, that was all he could afford. Greg Mortenson was surprised when heard that. In the USA, teachers are constantly inventing new methods to attract and motivate students to learn. However, these approaches do not work well all the time.
Then, they try all kinds of edutainment. Nevertheless, sometimes teachers struggle to maintain their students’ interest and attention. Ironically, these poor kids who even did not have a school in their village met every day. They were eager to read and learn with the little means they had to do so. The children sat on the ground and read the only book which the elder could afford to buy. One person would read while the others were listening carefully.
Without a doubt, we have to agree that these children were quite persistent in their practices. They genuinely wanted to study! Even the bad weather conditions would not stop them. It shocked Greg Mortenson.
That was the moment he decided to help.
How one man left an impact on the entire educational system
It has been a long and difficult journey, but Greg Mortenson has done that! He returned to the USA and started collecting money. Once every six months, he would go back to Pakistan and make agreements with authorities, teachers, and other people who could make a difference. Time after time, he would face a lack of desire to help build schools for children but that never stopped him. He just couldn’t give up on those kids so hungry for knowledge.
Currently, Greg Mortenson spearheads a charitable organization. He has built more than 145 schools in the areas where children mostly did not have any classes at all! Even more, he has built several dozens of medical centers and places for poor women in the villages of Pakistan and Afghanistan. He was also Nobel award-nominated twice.
There is one story that might astonish you. Greg Mortenson continued building the schools for children in Pakistan even after the September 11th attack happened. Americans did not understand his position. He was blamed several times for supporting terrorism. Greg Mortenson also received many letters with threats, aiming to stop him from supporting Pakistan’s children. People wanted him to stop educational and volunteering activities in countries with cultures somehow connected to terrorist acts. However, Greg Mortenson did not stop.
He explained his position quite clearly. In his opinion, all disasters in the world happen because of ignorance. Some people in poor countries do not have access to international libraries. They do not feel the beauty of other cultures. And they believe in what their authoritative government tells them. That’s why they become terrorists. They do not know how peaceful and charitable organizations work, and they have never seen any solutions in their life expect acting with the violence. Greg Mortenson is sure. Only education could change the world. Role models really matter to children. The more people who have good specialties are, the safer this world is.
P.S. If you are driven by a desire to make an impact on education systems, too, we are waiting for you. 1HOUR will be happy to invite you in our team!