At the age of 84 can you imagine not knowing how to write the number “6” or the letter “A”? If you couldn’t write this number or letter, can you imagine having the courage and determination to attend elementary school with children some more than 80 years younger than you?
I recently watched the movie, The First Grader, based on a true story of Kimani Maruge, the oldest person to start primary school according to the Guinness World Records. In 2003, the Kenyan government announced free primary education for all. The only requirement: a birth certificate. Despite not being of primary school age, not owning a school uniform, and having weak eyesight and hearing, Maruge fought for his right to be educated. And, he excelled while in school despite being plagued by flashbacks of his time in a British detention camp during the Mau Mau Uprising.
Maruge was elected head boy at his school, spoke about the importance of free primary education at the United Nations Millennium Development Summit, was even honored as the subject of a Google Doodle.
Maruge capitalized on every opportunity during his education. Are you doing the same?