Passion Makes Me Unstoppable!
Passion makes you unstoppable
2015/ Tunisia/ Raoudha
A life-changing diagnosis doesn’t need to prevent you from celebrating literature and culture.
I am Raoudah and I am from Tunisia. I was raised in a family interested in culture, where we celebrated literature. I grew up among piles of books lying around the house, and my father was a literature teacher. During my childhood, my daily routine included reading. My mother was determined that me and my three siblings would read a text out loud, fluently and expressively, every day before heading to school! After earning my diploma, I started teaching, and would read aloud to my students, urging them to memorize texts which they would then debate in class. 30 years ago, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, and my diagnosis severely diminished the amount of reading I could do. I could no longer hold the energetic type of classes that I led earlier in my career.
But this diagnosis did not stop me. I believe my passion makes me unstoppable. In our world there is so much suffering, yet people still survive and thrive. After seven years of holding reading sessions, I became a supervisor of classes. The school librarian’s lack of enthusiasm towards sharing books dismayed me: she did not want to allow the children to borrow books because it meant more work for her. From my sister, I heard about We Love Reading and I contacted Dr. Rana on how I could become a part of the initiative. The children were immediately excited to come to my reading aloud club and partake in a new experience. I now hold reading aloud sessions twice a week and coordinate an extra session as a book exchange. I always try to inspire my pupils. I encourage them to read as much as they can to strengthen their imagination. Also, I want to keep the tradition and culture of our country alive, particularly in the current context. To achieve this goal, I organized an event about traditional clothing and jewelry in order to ensure that my pupils understood about our local customs. I will continue doing things that benefit the children as long as I have energy to do so, and luckily, I find reading to the children to be a remedy for me.