Unflagging Passion for Girls’ Education

“There is nothing as fulfilling in this life as providing service to fellow human beings, more especially to the needy.”

Sister Salome Nambi

Sister Salome Nambi has been working as a GTL Coordinator in Uganda since 2006 and is passionate about and devoted to girls’ education. Growing up she lived in a village where girls were seldom sent to school. Her father opposed educating his daughters but eventually gave in to his wife’s insistent support of their education. Other men in the village made fun of him because each year at the tea-planting season he borrowed money from his employer to send his daughters to school. With Sister Salome’s success at becoming educated (and then developing a career as a teacher), the tables turned, and his employer’s daughters became envious and wanted their own education.

As a GTL Coordinator, Sister Salome finds and recruits bright girls who need sponsorships to complete schooling and places them in one of the four schools in Uganda approved by GTL. She finds GTL candidates in several ways—from girls’ parents or guardians who apply for scholarships on the GTL website and through outreach to her many contacts and networks developed when she was head mistress at St. Kizito High School. In addition, due to her many years at GTL and her reputation as a very strong supporter of girl’s education, many girls are referred to her and call her directly to inquire about a scholar-ship.

Throughout the course of the girl’s schooling, Sister Salome (with her assistant) visits the four schools twice a year to follow and support the GTL scholars. She provides encouragement and moral support. She also depends on her fellow head teachers at each school to keep a keen eye on the girls guiding their academic performance and welfare.

GTL President, Donna Lazorik, considers Sister Salome “an inspiration to the entire GTL organization. She has unflagging passion for girls’ education.”

GTL Volunteer, Allison Hackbarth, participated in one of the GTL trips to East Africa in 2013 and accompanied Sister Salome to the schools. “I saw firsthand what an inspiration she is to others. Sister has such positive and upbeat energy. When we drove up to the schools, the GTL girls came running out, and their beaming faces said it all. In getting to know Sister more during the visit, I realized she was also inspiring me to be my best self.”

Sister Salome finds her work as a GTL Coordinator extremely rewarding. “There is nothing as fulfilling in this life as providing service to fellow human beings, more especially to the needy. Seeing girls who started from scratch become engineers, health workers, teachers, and members of parliament—just naming them is reward enough.” Her mes-sage to GTL on its 20th anniversary is this: “Educate girls, and you will educate the nation.”

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