[i]In his first blog post from Rwanda, Jonah shares the identity he found of the elusive "dark knight" in the region. To read the full blog post, click [url=https://medium.com/@jonahh/what-is-the-dark-knight-55ff60b25f45]here[/url].[/i]
Rwandas average life expectancy has doubled within the past 10 years. It has produced the 2nd safest capital city for women in the world, Kigali. It has developed universal health insurance for its citizens. As a parallel, these street children are some of the brightest Ive ever met. They are highly in demand by public schools hoping to increase their standardized test scores and quality of the student body. Through adversity was a country able to rally and thrive. Through adversity was a boy able to use his lost childhoods experiences to become a role model for his peers. Every day I am privileged to teach and work with these children, and even with only two weeks of work, I have learned more about the strength and hope of mankind than I would have ever learned in any capacity back home in Canada.
On my very first day of work at Les Enfants de Dieu, I met the caped crusader himself. Sitting in the Primary 2 English class, a young boy in front of me borrowed my notebook and pen. He was a very smart boy, making a mini-guide to common Kinyarwanda terms. He even told me he wanted to be a doctor one day. The young boy then proceeded to draw me as I was trying to observe how the teacher communicated with the students, most of whom had little formal education prior to living on the streets. By the end of the day, his depiction was complete: [i]the caped crusader has my back[/i].
Is it a masked vigilante fighting evil to give hope to a dysfunctional society? Is it a symbol of balance in the wake of ethical shifts in society? When I set foot in Kigali, when I saw the reactions after teaching my first class, when I first met Batman, and when I saw Goma in the distance, I think I understood what the Dark Knight represents. Theres a very fine line between good and evil, polar opposites which are out of your control man-made judgments that can classify, but cannot inspire. Depending on the version of the story, you can either be the hero or the villain. You will always be judged for things that could polarize others. The only thing that matters is that you do what you wholeheartedly believe is right. 21 days into this adventure, I think Im starting to enjoy donning the mask.
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