Everyday Heroes--People Who Are Making a Difference
Heroes take journeys, confront dragons, and discover the treasure of their true selves.--Carol Pearson (The Hero Within)
It is rewarding to get the opportunity to share stories about our everyday heroes who seldom receive public attention, yet they toil and do the work that calls out to our humanity. These heroes are champions of a cause that is bigger than celebrity or self aggrandizement; they are focused on the needs of the people they serve.
One such hero is none other than Winsome Hewitt, one of our valued contributors who is extending her ministry by reaching out to young people in Jamaica and sharing lessons in leadership with them. Winsome recently held a workshop in Montego Bay to motivate, inspire, educate and listen to our young people in transition.
From an early age Winsome knew she wanted to help those in need. She developed this passion while growing up in Jamaica and expanded upon it while living in England. She states “I am a graduate of the GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sports where I gained a Diploma. I taught Physical Education at the Cambridge Comprehensive High school, and was the Netball coach there. I also played Netball for the Jamaica Teachers Association Western Team.
Winsome states, " I have always being interested in pupils who were vulnerable and those who were in need. One of the students who lived with me and whom I mentored is now a trained teacher. It was after moving to England that I really got the chance to work with vulnerable young people and those with SEN (Special Education Needs).”
After moving to England, Winsome obtained her B.A. in Education from Greenwich University in London, and her M.A. in Special Educational Needs- specializing in Literacy, Teaching Resources and Teaching Techniques. She is currently a specialist teacher.
True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.--Arthur Ashe
Whenever Winsome is in Jamaica she volunteers her time and expertise at the West Haven children's home where she reads with the pupils, spend valuable time with them and engage in staff activities. This time around she was not able to do as she would usually do. Winsome did however find the time and resources to do a workshop with teachers from the English Department at the Green Pond high School in Montego Bay. The topic was “Exploring Tools for Success in Writing”. The focus was with young pupils who are deemed as slow learners.
Winsome utilized tools such as:
- Differentiation through questioning, resources, space and time.
- Writing to describe / persuade etc.
- Assessment for Learning (AFL)
- Target Setting - what targets are set based on what is produced by the pupil, so that progress can be made next time around
- Peer Assessment
- Teacher Assessment
- Self Assessment and how these impact on pupils learning and attainment.
- Base Line Assessment to engage pupils in the teaching and learning process
The workshop is an example of how we can volunteer our time and give back. In addition to the workshop Winsome will be launching a book drive to obtain books, preferebly non-fictions, for the Green Pond High School library. As she stated "It is one of the biggest school library I have seen, unfortunately it is in need of books and other supplies." These random acts of kindness are not at all uncommon—they are seldom reported!
Bridges to Jamaica is proud of the effort of friends such as Winsome Hewitt who are making change happen in Jamaica by being the change we wish to see. We encourage everyone to volunteer and support our communities with their time, skills and resouces.
From all of us to you Winsome—Thank you for being our every day hero!
Tell us about your everyday hero and share your ideas with us as well! By working together we can change attitudes and become an activist society that is working in meaningful ways to address the many issues that affects all.