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Opening up a world of education

Children love to learn. If they are denied access to knowledge, we also deny them the opportunity to change their lives for the better.

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EAA Youth Series: Mohamed Falfoul

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“If we want to talk about a sturdy change, it is imperative to educate"

My name is Mohamed Falfoul. I am 24 years old and I am originally from Tunisia.

This is a principle I deeply believe in now, but words like these were not that obvious to me when I started as an activist.

This beginning I'm talking about dates back to 2013 when I was a 17 year-old highschooler.

In the Tunisian baccalaureate, we have the right to choose an optional subject. So, for me in a minimalist spirit in terms of effort, and a maximalist in terms of grades, I chose an option called "project creation" and I told myself that I would create a club within the high school. The entire administration of Sadiki College mobilised its resources to support my me and my classmates; that is how I realised the extraordinary impact that activism can have on society, in addition to the unity it generates.

The first thing that I did was to charge my project with a new kind of spirit of honesty and integrity.

My project became the creation of a self-sufficient and free nursery in my high school.

The idea of the club did not disappear though,

I will tell you what it became a bit later...

In the meantime, I had the great honour to move to Senegal for three years to study medicine, and I had the further honour to become the founding president of the Senegalese Federation of Medical Students, an organization that has joined the International Federation of Medical Students and will therefore provide training and non-formal education opportunities for medical students in Senegal.

When I returned home to Tunisia, I took advantage of this experience to develop the high school club, with which I kept in close contact, into a national organization that would regroup clubs in all educational institutions, train young people on the understanding of what an educational system is, and encourage them to advocate to improve their own education.

The Association YOUTH CLUBs was then founded.

Today it has 2000 students in 50 clubs from 14 Tunisian governorates; with a belief in the possibility of developing quality and equitable education for all.

In order to do so, it works hard on training young people on advocacy and seeks to involve all stakeholders in the discussions: government, teachers, students, parents, associations, media, trade unions etc.

Bearing in mind that diversity must be used as an advantage, I gave a lot of my time to other organisations: TED, MUN, Associa-Med, OST, EAA etc.

I make it an effort to try to make these organizations collaborate with each other to get the best out of it.

I am often told that I find one way or another to involve everyone around me in the YOUTH CLUBs Association, and I fully assume this challenge. The reason I am so involved in it, is because I believe in it, I believe in the power of education.

It may seem that because of my career choice, which is not easy, it might be difficult for me to work in both medicine and education. You know what? I agree - that is why my ultimate goal is to make a career in something that unites both of them.

I do not know what it is yet, but I am optimistic to find my way to it.

I educate myself and gain experience so that I can evolve and contribute to the world as best as I can.

Impact

"Humanity will not overcome the immense challenges we face unless we ensure that children get the quality education that equips them to play their part in the modern world." -- HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser

Surpassing

12.8 million

enrolment commitments for OOSC

9,099

Scholarships

89.5%

retention rate

395,558

Teachers trained

45,000

schools and classrooms