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Pamela’s Article 2: A Student Learning from a Painful Lesson in Ghana

Article #30 in the YCC Kids Club Ghana Student Life Stories Project
Understanding an Adult’s Punishment

By Pamela Agbi, Age 14

This story is a story I will never ever forget in my life.

On the sixth of March, Ghana’s Independence Day, Youth Creating Change organized an excursion to a huge celebration in Aburi Botanical Gardens, two hours from Sogakope.

All the students in YCC’s Cross-Culture Class were organized to attend so that we could learn how to throw our own fundraising events for the educational exchange to the United Kingdom this August!

Pamela, the author of this article.
Pamela, the author of this article.

That day, on the sixth of March, 2010, all of us from Cross-Culture Class gathered very early at the YCC Guesthouse opposite the Global Evangelical Church, waiting for the bus. We were so excited! YCC’s Director gathered us around. He said very solemnly, “We are ready to leave, BUT… not all and sundry will go.”

“Oh no!” gasped one of my friends. The Director then took out his academic register, and began to read off for each of us which days of class we had missed, and which we had attended. Then, which homework assignments we had missed, and which we had completed. My heart turned cold.

I was the third person on the list, and the Director told me: “In eight days of Saturday class, you only came to five. Moreover, you did not do the most recent homework assignment.”

Pamela with the Youth Creating Change sign.
Pamela with the Youth Creating Change sign.

“But I did do it!” I said. “I put it on a piece of paper and pasted it into a book I borrowed from a friend, and it must have fallen out!”

But the Director was firm in his decision. “I am teaching you not to be sloppy,” he said. “It is better for you to learn this lesson now than in August as we set off to London.”

So the students who were allowed go to Aburi were chosen. Their foods were parked in the bus, and they walked to their seats. Some of my friends standing at the road with me were crying. Many of our colleagues who were chosen to go were also crying, imagining how we must feel.

But I did not cry. Rather, I felt happy, because I have two proverbs that keep me on track:

1. We learn from mistakes. For example: Somebody will fall before you rise.

2. Something must be wrong before something will be correct. In other words, somebody must die before you live.

Pamela smiling!
Pamela smiling!

When the bus to Aburi drove off with the lucky students, we remaining few told Sir Oliver that he should give us books to do all the homework we owed, and we should not be allowed to leave before twelve noon. We asked Sir Oliver to provide food for us to eat, and he agreed.

This is my experience that I want to share with you, because I will benefit from it for the rest of my life.

Lillie’s Note: Please leave Pamela a comment on her fascinating article! As a teacher, Pamela’s story is particularly moving to read because it shows how much students learn from — and in fact appreciate — correction… whether or not they admit it. It also demonstrates the inspirational high standards of student behavior that I witnessed my whole three months in Ghana.


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Christina E.

Wednesday 25th of February 2015

Wow! This is amazing! It's really interesting about how she took a painful experience and didn't let it bring her down, but instead her experience pushed her to do better.


Wednesday 25th of February 2015

I think that it is amazing how this girl has taken a painful lesson and turned it into something that she will learn from to grow from. I find this truly inspiring to hear stories from people that are so different but yet the same.


Wednesday 2nd of May 2012

I 100% agree with you Pamela. You must be a great student and it saddens my heart that you weren't able to go, but it is true you do learn from your mistakes. I hope you enjoy life and have another opportunity like this one. I wish you the best and hope you are doing well.


Thursday 3rd of February 2011

Hey Pamela! I really loved this story! You are right people do learn from their mistakes!


Thursday 9th of December 2010

This article really inspired me! She was really mature about the entire situation and i admire her for that. I also really like her morals. Now that she learned her lesson, she will be going on the next class trip!! Great article!

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