North Carolina Newspapers

    THE FEDERATION JOURNAL
"Listen to our Clarion Watchtvord—We are Lifting As We Climb”
VOLUME 10
MARCH-APRIL, 1953
NUMBER 2
A Statement on the Status of
The Women of the Republic
of Liberia
By
SARAH SIMPSON GEORGE
Founder-President
Liberian Women’s Social and Political
Movement, Monrovia, Liberia
The first cooperate move on the part of
the Liberian women towards their political
rights began in 1931 when a group of
Liberian Women’s League under the
presidency of Mrs. Sarah Simpson George.
Their first step was to assist government
during those dark and dreary days when
the autonomy of Liberia was threatened,
in cleaning up the streets of Monrovia and
in helping to better the sanitary condi
tions. This assistance was welcomed by
officials of government, citizens and resi
dents of the capital city. When the note of
suffrage for women was touched, the
wildest cry ever made was heard in very
loud tunes—“Away, away with them,
these would-be-men.”
Later in 1932 another group of women
under the leadership of Mrs. Maude A.
Morris petitioned the national legislature
requesting the amendment to the con
stitution to extend sufferage to the wom
en. This was likewise treated with laughter
and contempt.
In the year 1942 during President Edwin
Barclay’s administration upon his recom
mendation a “referendum act” was pass
ed by the legislature and approved by
President Barclay to amend the constitu
tion granting women the right to vote at
city elections. This also met with rebuff
by a certain political party’s convention in
January, 1943. As a result the act was
never referred to the constituents. It
therefore died a natural death.
However, in 1942 President William V.
S. Tubman in his platform on p>olicies
which he would adopt in case of election
as President of Liberia, had as one of the
planks of said platfoi-m the extension of
equal political rights to the women of
Liberia. Mr. Tubman was elected an swoni
in office January 3, 1944. In his Inaugural
address he said: “We shall therefore per-
serve with our endeavor to extend to the
women of Liberia full participation in the
affairs of government and its political
activities, including the right of female
suffrage.” In his first annual message to
the national legislature, November, 1944,
President , Tubman recommended the
amendment to the constitution to grant
Continued on P(\ge 5
What of The Mentally
Retarded Child?
By
MRS. J. S. BROWN
More and more, leaders in the field of
education are planning, and reorganizing
educational programs to more nearly meet
the needs of pupils living in the complexi
ties of our modern world.
Many new courses have been added to
the curricula in recent years where-by
students may gain practical experiences in
the high school and elementary school in
the development of skills and knowledge
which were with-held until later in their
educational career previously. This in it
self is commendable and could be estab
lished on a much broader scale if facilities
were adequate.
However good the intention of these
leaders, the fact is evident that so far the
needs of a great number of children have
not been affected by the provision made
for a few. This is the reason that the
problem is so acute in certain sections of
our country.
From a recent study of the results of
psycholigical test, given at the Morrison
Training School where I. Q’s in the past
nine months range from 47 to 103, with at
least one-half the cases below 70, it is ap
palling to note that grade placements for
these boys range from first through tenth.
Social promotions? Perhaps a good
name to call it but I should like to name
it administrative frustration. The ques
tion is passed from one to another, “What
can I do with him?” I hold that any
school needs a psychologist, in most cases
a psychiatrist to study each child’s ca
pacities before he has any grade place
ment. This would help the teacher im
mensely and perhaps eliminate the
maladjustment of the child as he grows
up.
According to our records many sources
of juvenile delinquency originate in the
child’s inability to progress in proportion
to the other members of his class. Hence,
he becomes a truant from the school—the
nlace where he is embarrassed because of
his inabilities.
Who wants to live where he is humiliat
ed and made to feel inferior by his own
acts?
Now that a battery of tests may help
determine the capacities of each,,,child,
would it not be wise to establish types of
schools gto,, meet needs of the types of
mental capacities? Would it not over a
Continued on Page 4
Hands Acros The Sea
By
ESTHER L. COKER
We are women and girls of the Y. W. C.
A. of Sierra Leone. Our headquarters are
at No. 22 Charlotte Street, Freetown,
Sierra Leone. Over 200 of us have lit
candles on a triangle and we are extend
ing our glow. There are flickers here and
there, moving towards the Blue Triangle
on all sides, so as to reach the base from
where to give a steadier glow.
THIS MUCH WE DO.
We have a “Play Centre” of over 40
children aged 2 to 6 years. See them
come in on Saturday mornings, brought
by mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, or
nurses, at 9 o’clock. They are left in the
ground floor of a school building owned by
the Cathedral Church. We take care of
them up till 11 a. m., while mothers get
their marketing or housework done, and
feel confident that their little ones are
safe in our care. We teach them hymns,
songs, games, handicrafts, and tell them
Bible stories as well as other stories. They
have a drink of milk or fruit juice fur a
break, and when kind donors give it they
get a biscuit or sweet occasionally. At
Xmastide they have a party, where they
receive toys and a lot of eats, while they
in turn bring presents to be taken to sick
children in the hospitals.
We have a “Junior Group” aged 8 to 12
years—and also the “‘Y’ 'Teens” aged 13
to 18 years. See them come in to the Com
munity Centre at 5 p. m. on Thursdays
full of life and glee each out to get the
best fun of the evening. They settle down
to games, cooking classes, handiwork,
listen to talks, have quizes, folk dancing—
They elect their officers, president, secre
tary, treasurer, and other office bearers,
annually. Not a year goes by without
some outing or picnic. They also take
their turn during the big event of the
year in the Y. W. C. A. ‘Y’ week in No
vember with older members of the as
sociation, when they exhibit or sell what
ever handiwork they have done in the
year.
Our “Young Adult Group” is a live
wire. Lately it has become the orbit of the
association. We only wish we had more
qualified club leaders. Still, in this group
we,watch future leaders take their form.
We endeavour to watch out for the seeds
that haye been sowil in the earlier groups
come to fruition. There are those in the
plan.. You see they are the. 18 plus. We
train .here also the would be wiyes and
Continued on Page 6
    

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