Self Reliance

Options, Decisions & Consequences

At Kembu we strive to maintain an environment where teachers and guardians of children are in a position to encourage kids to explore and take risks. This creates a show confidence in these children’s capabilities, thus enabling them to internalize the faith nurtured in them to develop an enduring sense of competence for themselves.

Self-reliance in children means being confident in their own abilities and the ability to do things for themselves. Going away from home on a school outing is a very special time for students as it is an opportunity for them to step out from the safety net their parents provide for them and experiment with their own independence.

To encourage this on the understanding that this freedom comes with responsibility both to themselves and those around them teaches them that they have control over their lives. To provide them with guidance and then the freedom to make their own choices and decisions (and mistakes) shows them what their responsibilities are, that they must accept those responsibilities, and then they must be held them accountable for actions.

All this combines to create children that can be trusted to be safe, sensible, secure and self-reliant. Traits that mean they can be  leadership and trust and adventure.

An educationalist, Leo Buscaglia summarised the ideas of self reliance in education in the importance of taking risks. He wrote:

“The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don’t let them put you in that position.

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental
To reach for another is to risk involvement
To expose your ideas and your dreams, before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return
To live is to risk dying
To believe is to risk despair
To try is to risk failure

But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The people who risk nothing, do nothing, have nothing, are nothing. They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live. Chained by their attitudes they are slaves; they have forfeited their freedom.

Only a person who risks is free. Risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.”