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Raïnatou recalls her BRAVE return to school

Terrorists told us to close the school.

A solution had to be found.

Plan International helped me go back to school.

Raïnatou, 13,
Burkina Faso
Raïnatou standing wearing her backpack
Raïnatou standing wearing her backpack

Terrorists told us to close the school.

A solution had to be found.

Plan International helped me go back to school.

Raïnatou, 13,>Burkina Faso

An Imminent Threat

One day we were at school and people came to tell us to close the school, and if anyone came back, they would kill that person.” 

In Raïnatou’s country of Burkina Faso, terrorists are attacking villages, threatening teachers, and looting schools. As a result, the country is facing one of the world’s fastest-growing displacement crises. More than 800,000 children under the age of 14, including Raïnatou, have been forcibly removed from their school, home and family because of armed conflict and violence.

After terrorists threatened her school, it was no longer safe for 13-year-old Raïnatou to access her right to education.

“I ran home and informed my parents. With my father, a solution had to be found so that I could continue my studies.

But you and other Plan International Because I am a Girl supporters* are helping children and girls like Raïnatou access education safely and succeed in pursuing their dreams.


Raïnatou was invited into the home of her uncle, Jean, who lives in a safer village with a school supported by Team Girl.

Jean, Raïnatou’s uncle, sitting in a community space.

On the radio, I hear everything must be done to enroll children, especially girls, in school. That’s why, when I heard that my niece dropped out, I did everything to take her in so that she could continue her studies.


Jean, Raïnatou’s uncle, offers his support to help Raïnatou return to school safely.

To help activate community-led change, supporters like you help empower local advocates to communicate the importance of education throughout the country. Through radio broadcasts and community volunteers like Nadinga, awareness among local parents is increasing.

Community volunteer Nadinga holding a meeting to encourage parents to send their children to school.

I’m here to educate them to do everything to help our daughters succeed, but because of conflict and insecurity, everyone is afraid, so it makes our work harder.


Community volunteer, Nadinga, holds a meeting to help parents enroll their children in school.

Raïnatou continues to live with her uncle and attends one of the 200 schools reached by Team Girl members like you. Your committed support helps ensure continued access to education for girls like Raïnatou by providing safe learning environments and essential resources.

With help from your support, girls’ access to their rights is strengthening every day. Girls like Raïnatou can continue to study safely, while children and their communities affected by displacement are able to rebuild and recover.

Raïnatou studying safely in her community. Raïnatou smiles wearing her backpack as she safely attends school in her new community.

“I am very happy to have returned to school.”


Plan International helped me go back to school. They gave me a good bag, supplies and a scholarship. They also donated hand washing facilities to my school. When I grow up, I would like to be a doctor to treat the sick.” 

Meanwhile, Nadinga vows to continue combating the setbacks to girls’ rights and futures, worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, conflict and extreme poverty.

Nadinga working with her local community to advance girls’ rights.

I pledge to give my all for the education of children. I pledge to sensitize people to say no to violence against children and early marriage. I thank Plan International very much.


A huge THANK YOU to Team Girl supporters for helping children and girls like Raïnatou discover their inherent power and unleash the potential of education. Your help goes a long way to support people and communities affected by conflict and displacement.

Together we are advancing children’s and girls’ rights towards an equal future.

Return to Because I am a Girl Hub

* Project facilitated in partnership with the Strømme Foundation and Global Affairs Canada.