Gamal Abdel Nasser said of his African nation
” We are a sentimental people, we prefer a few kind words rather than millions of dollars given in a humiliating way”
It is this warmth and welcome to visitors that will remain central in the minds of the two teachers Martina Griffin and James Murtagh from Colaiste Eaman Ris, Callan, Co Kilkenny who spent their Easter holidays in Lusaka, Zambia. This trip commenced preparation for the return immersion programme next Easter with 15 students and third teacher Cian Ryan.
Over the two and a half weeks in Africa James and Martina were hosted by the local Christian Brothers at the International Spiritual Centre at Avondale, Lusaka. James and Martina joined Br Nsamu Moonga on his daily visits to homes, schools and orphanages.
Blessed Edmund Rice opened his whole heart to the poor, compassion was at the heart of what he was about. Immersion such as this is a unique and inspirational expression of The Edmund Rice ethos. Both teachers felt privileged to have encountered first hand, victims of poverty and injustice.
Our return group of students will act as ambassadors for their school, parishes and families as they forge links through charitable work on farms, in schools, orphanages and housing compounds. Preparation for our return involves two elements- preparing the students for their immersion with useful information on African culture and a fundraising aspect.
Significant time is also given on reflections to nourish the students’ well being, in a spiritual, physical and emotional sense- before, during and after the trip.
We are no doubt as to the rewards that will be reaped on our young students in terms of character building and personal growth as a result of this trip.
in the words of Nelson Mandela-
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”