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Spotlighting Nadifo Abukar from One91 School for Adults

Spotlighting Nadifo Abukar from One91 School for Adults
Abukar listens to instructions during adult education class.

Growing up in Kenya, Nadifo Abukar’s education was often disrupted. But her desire to learn and create a better life for herself has never wavered.

Abukar was born in Somalia and at a young age was brought to Kenya where she regularly moved between different families and schools. During that time she said she spent more time working than actually attending class. Abukar ended up in a refugee camp and in 2016 came to Minnesota.

“It’s really difficult when you go to another country. You don’t know who is there, what the rules are,” she said. “When you don’t have any support, you miss a lot of things.”

Abukar found a safe place to live in Minnesota, but said she still didn’t “know how to live life.” She got a job as a housekeeper and in 2018 began taking an English class through the One91 School for Adults. She didn’t have a driver’s license, so she either walked to Diamondhead Education Center or got rides from her teachers or classmates.

“It’s not easy to have a job and do schooling. I was pushing myself hard. Learning is not easy when you’re tired,” Abukar said. “I would never give up even if I’m freezing or hot. No matter what gets in my way, I’m going to cross it.”

The School for Adults turned out to be a great resource for Abukar. She’s taken four English classes over the last five years that have improved her language skills, and the teachers have helped her fill out paperwork and apply for jobs. She now works at a department store where her English language skills have allowed her to begin working as a cashier.

“(My English) has gotten better and better and I know more and more,” Abukar said.

Abukar’s experience with the One91 School for Adults has given her confidence and allowed her to see just how strong she is.

“I’ve learned many things and been supported and respected. Now I can look at it and say ‘this is life and this is living,” Abukar said. “I’ve learned I have to support and defend myself and I have to learn and to help myself, and I came to the right place.”

  • Adult Basic Education
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