Annah Mambwe Choongo becomes professional nurse at 57

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IT is generally perceived that the elderly have difficulties in upgrading their education for them to learn new things.

But for Annah Mambwe Choongo, 57, her story is different as well as unique and inspiring as she has defied all odds by becoming a professional nurse at the age of 56.

Ms Choongo, who is married to Choma Central Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) Church pastor Anthony Choongo with four children, pursued a Nursing course at Macha School of Nursing at the age of 53 and she graduated on October 11, 2019 at the age of 56.

Soon after graduation, she got employed as full time Nurse under the Center for Disease Control (CDC) at Shampande Clinic in Choma.

In an interview, Ms Choongo urged older women to prioritize education as age could not limit one’s education ambitions.

“Like Nelson Mandela said, education is the most powerful weapon one can use to conquer the world and therefore my appeal to older women like myself is that they must embrace education for the betterment of their future. They should never give up and should always aim higher in life,” she said.

Ms Choongo, who resumed her secondary school education at the age of 42 and started college education at the age of 53, is of the view that education helps people to understand and articulate issues from an informed perspective.

“I know that many mothers like me are wondering on how I managed to go back to school at an old age when all my children had already completed their school. There are also some cultural beliefs which suggest that women are supposed to be confined to the kitchen as their husbands labor. We need to change this narrative. Women are key partners in national development and therefore we can’t continue remaining in the kitchen. In my case, I remained resolute with my education and this is why I went back to school at an old age,” she said.

By Brian Hatyoka/Times of Zambia

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