Rihanna teaches math and interacts with students in rural Malawi in a new short documentary chronicling her January trip to the African nation. The singer visited the country to learn about the numerous challenges facing the country’s educational system as part of her role as founder of the Clara Lionel Foundation and Global Ambassador for the Global Partnership for Education.
The clip focuses on Rihanna’s trip to the Muzu primary school and offers a detailed overview of how issues like education, poverty, hunger and women’s rights intersect in Malawi, especially in rural areas. As the clip highlights, a single teacher is often responsible for up to 100 students, many of whom don’t have proper access to food. Furthermore, classroom materials are often as scarce as school buildings, and this poor infrastructure puts young women at a disadvantage and forces many to make a lengthy and potentially dangerous walk to-and-from school every day.
Despite these issues, the clip is packed with moments of hope, including remarks from an optimistic student at Muzu and a passionate young woman, who speaks out against arranged marriages. Elsewhere, Rihanna adorably helps a student solve a math problem, cheers on a girls’ rugby squad and discusses the unique way many students learn at Muzu.
“I love that they learn in melody,” she says. “That’s like my favorite thing because kids, they adopt melody really, really quickly. And so if you can use that as a learning tool, I think that’s the most brilliant, brilliant thing.”
The GPE organized the trip with Global Citizen. Former Australian Prime Minister and Board Chair of the GPE Julia Gillard and Global Citizen CEO Hugh Evans joined the singer on the trip. Rihanna is calling on fans around the world to help donate to the Global Partnership for Education’s efforts to raise $3.1 billion to bring quality education to over 870 million children in 89 countries between 2018 and 2020.