Kaieteur News – A young boy lives in the countryside with his family. His father is a Cow Herder and also a farmer. This young lad is twelve years old.
He awakes at 5:00 hrs. each day. Since his parents have instilled in him the importance of undertaking responsibilities in the home by doing basic chores, he does not have to be told what to do. His day follows a routine.
The first thing that he does on getting out of bed is to make his bed and tidy his room. He then proceeds outside to the back of his house where the cow pens are located. For the next hour, he will milk the cows that have to be milked. He is skilled in this and tries to get as much milk as he can from the cows.
By the time this is completed, it is time for him to hand over to his father who will take care of the feeding and grazing of the cows in the pastures aback of the farm which his family plants.
After handing over the cows to his father, he proceeds to the standpipe in his yard where there are buckets and drums of water to be fetched. He has to fill many of these so that himself and siblings can bathe and also to ensure that there is sufficient in the home for the daily housework. After filling one bucket he places another bucket under the standpipe while he trucks the filled container inside. This routine continues until all the buckets are filled and inside the house.
The twelve-year old then proceeds into the house where he assists his smaller brothers and sisters to get dressed and ready for school. Then the family sits down to a quick but hearty breakfast. Afterwards, he helps with the dishes and whatever else he can in the kitchen before dashing off to bathe and dress for school.
On those days, such as Saturdays, when he is not at school, he has to go with his family house to house to deliver milk and the remainder of the morning is spent at the market selling the produce that is produced on his family’s farm. On Sundays his additional chores include sweeping the yard and washing the family car.
But since his parents value education, he is not allowed to miss school. Every weekday therefore he has to attend school.
After school he comes home and after having a snack he goes to get his watering can. Each afternoon he has to attend to the kitchen garden and flower plants. His job is to each day water the various plants which are grown in his yard. He goes around the kitchen garden to see what is ready for picking. He does this and takes the produce inside.
Then he heads for the pasture where the cows are grazing. The sun by this time is setting in the west. The cows have to be herded and guided back home. They are not always obedient and sometimes a few may go astray. It is quite a tiring task and by the time he gets them into the pens, night has set and he is exhausted.
But the day of this young lad is not ended. He has to help out around the house when he finishes and after dinner he has to tidy the dishes. By the time he is finished, there is little time to relax or study since he has been taught the importance of a good night’s sleep.
One night, just before retiring, the young lad sees his father reading the newspaper and mumbling to himself. He asks his father what is the problem. The father says, “This is a lot of nonsense! I have never heard of a more deplorable idea. The Government has to be crazy to be even thinking about doing this.”
“What is it that the Government is thinking about doing?” asks the twelve year old.
Within lifting his head out of the newspaper, the father says, “They are thinking about allowing children to do light work from age thirteen. They cannot be serious. Children should not be allowed to work at such a young age.”
(The views expressed in this articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and beliefs of this newspaper and its affiliates.)
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