In August this year, students from Marrara Christian College in the Northern Territory participated in Tearfund’s first ever read-a-thon. Reading books and raising funds for our partners’ education projects around the world, these students had their eyes opened to the transformative power of education - especially for people living in poverty.
Across the school, the students were cheered on by David Parkin, Marrara’s teacher librarian. David has been an enthusiastic supporter of Tearfund since becoming involved as a Useful Gift Shop operator at his church many years ago, and was excited to have a way to engage the school in work of Tearfund.
For someone engaged in teaching and learning every day, David knows how important it is for the future of children and adults alike. ‘Education levels are a critical indicator of opportunities in life - or a lack of opportunity - for people. Without a reasonable education, people are restricted in their life choices as well as their ability to support their families.’
Tearfund’s Useful Gift Catalogue features four fantastic gifts that contribute to education projects run by our partners around the world, but David’s personal favourite is the Teacher Training gift.
‘As a teacher myself, I see the importance of a good education. Even in a poor or disadvantaged setting, having a trained teacher is important to giving children and their families a huge step up in life.’
And rather than another mug or box of choccies, why not grab a Useful Gift for your thank you gifts at the end of the school year? ‘The cheapest Useful Gifts cost the same as a commercial Christmas card yet they have the added bonus of being useful and possibly life-changing,’ says David. ‘The gift not only supports people and communities in need, but costs little in postage and is easy to choose and purchase.'