A Teacher’s perspective

What does ‘World Ready’ mean?

Jacqui Maycock, National Director-in-waiting for the Govenor General’s Youth Award, Bahamas, discusses the integral relationship between great formal education and fulfilling non-formal education. 

“To me the phrase ‘world ready’ is twofold. On the one hand, it could be a matter-of-fact statement for an individual to feel that they can overcome whatever the world has in store. On the other, it could be the world declaring that it is ready for this individual to take on the challenge. Either way, I believe the Award is preparing young people for whatever is to come.”

NAO leader Bahamas

A vehicle for non-formal education

“Since finishing my own Gold Award, I have continued to be involved with this Award programme for almost twenty years. Throughout my life, no other organisation, club, or programme that I have been involved with, has molded me like this Award.

“I grew up on a very small island in The Commonwealth of The Bahamas, and while resources for activities were very limited, the opportunity to participate in The Governor General’s Youth Award was available. I never forgot the reason I started the programme – the independence it gave me as a young girl. The reason I am still involved is that I feel the Award is the most diverse programme in the world for young people.

The Award programme stands at the forefront of change. As a teacher, I know that young people have what it takes.

“I am a trained teacher, and as I look at how the world of education has evolved over the years, I notice that the trend in education has shifted from this ‘boxed’ approach to one that allows more ‘freedom’ for self-determination. As an educator, the questions at the forefront of one’s mind are, ‘Are we preparing our children for the world they will grow up in?’ and ‘Will they be world ready?’ As the benefits of the effect of non-formal education become more evident with each passing day, I realise that this Award programme stands at the forefront of change. We have the ideas, resources, and results that are tried and proven.  As a teacher, I know that young people have what it takes.

“The more I read, the more I thought and compared the education of our Bahamian children to that of other children around the world. I began to question – whose responsibility it was for the education of the ‘whole individual’?  The conclusion that I drew was that any young person who had achieved their Award, had qualities that I believed prepared them for a part of life they may or may not face, but they would have the tools to overcome.

“Through my involvement in the Award, I have found that one thing has become clear. There is a wealth of inspiration gained amongst people who have dedicated their time and effort to ensure that young people across the globe are prepared for whatever they may face. The Award programme provides opportunities for all young people to be equipped for the world, in spite of their differences. It is the game-changer that will offer young people something that they cannot find anywhere else. We are ready for the world.”

– Jacqui Maycock, National Director-in-waiting – Bahamas

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