A few weeks ago, Tim travelled to the Langalanga Lagoon on the island of Malaita. An area of small villages nestled on the edge of the picturesque waterway is home to speakers of the Wala Language. With little land and the sea at their doorsteps, these people depend on the sea for their livelihood. Christianity came to the Wala people about one hundred years ago, but in early 2008 they will finally have a New Testament in their own language.
Tim has been working with Wala speakers to produce a reading primer book which will be used to teach people how to read and write their language. This last week Tim returned to the Lagoon with the newly printed reading primer to hold a training workshop for teachers. There are now 35 teachers who are ready to start beginning reading classes in their home communities. We hope many Wala speakers who donâ€™t know how to read today will be in the beginning stages of reading by the time the New Testament is ready to be launched early next year.
Tim has held many teacher training workshops around the country, but this one a bit special. In addition to the participants who attended the workshop, Tim invited literacy trainers from the Literacy Association of the Solomon Islands to come along as well. This committed group of people are serving in communities around the Solomons, training teachers and overseeing literacy projects. They are in the capital city for a few weeks to attend their Annual General Meeting and have been getting refresher training themselves. Going to the Wala workshop with Tim provided an opportunity for some good refresher training for them and they also helped supervise the teacher trainees in small practice groups.