“When one becomes a teacher for vocation, and teaches from the heart, even if he works for 100 years, the job is never boring”. With these words, BBVA Microfinance Foundation dominican entrepreneur Bienvenida Robert, describes the beauty of being able to teach so many. “A child”, she adds, “is like a blank page where a teacher writes lessons that would last his lifetime.”
Her passion and determination provided the strength she needed to found a school, despite having few people believe in her. “To set my project up, I had to make decisions and turn deaf ears to those who would approach me and tell me that this was not feasible; that it was more secure and stable to continue being an employee.”
“A child is like a blank page where a teacher writes lessons that would last his lifetime”
Today, she proudly shares how time proved her right: her school, which is named after one of the greatest Latin American humanists of the 20th century, accommodates almost 1,000 students. “The Pedro Henríquez Ureña school was born out of a dream.” The dream of giving her community one of the most valuable assets of the society: education.
Teachers as engines of development and social change
On World Teachers’ Day, UNESCO reminds that teachers are “essential for the world’s sustainable development, and constitute the most influential and powerful force to achieve equity, access and quality in education.” Because of this, education appears as Goal number 4 out of the 17 others in the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda of the United Nations.
It is hoped that this year would be a witness to ensure and provide “inclusive and quality education for all.” This goal would be incomprehensible without teachers, to which the UN highly refers in one of the SDG 4’s targets.
“Today, this school is a reality thanks to the unconditional support that was given to me by Banco Adopem”, shared Bienvenida, the main character of this story. The BBVA Microfinance Foundation’s entity in the Dominican Republic provides the necessary aid so that this teacher, mother and wife could contribute to making a more equitable world.
“Microcredits show us how something so small and mundane could grow in solidarity, providing fundamental educational value for the society’s transformation”, pointed out the Dean of Universidad de Granada, Pilar Aranda, in the inaugural ceremony for this year’s academic course, held at the Melilla campus.
At almost 70 years old, Bienvenida doesn’t want to hear anything about retirement. She trusts that she could still receive more children and young people from nearby towns to give them the opportunity to go beyond the destiny imposed by their birth and not by their talents.
Recalling the words of Rebeca Grynspan, Iberoamerican Secretary General, she said that talent “is equally distributed around the world”. She also added, “opportunity is not”. “One of the major challenges for professors is to contribute to the formation of values in children”, concludes Bienvenida. Only by ending this inequality and creating awareness in future generations, can things truly change.