"In order to journey steadily, we must apply ourselves to doing well the stretch of road immediately before us on the first day of the journey, and not waste time wanting to do the last lap of the way while we still have to make it through the first." - St Francis de Sales
Fr. Tom would remark often that one of the most mature practices we need to develop is the ability to pick oneself up after a "fall or blow" and dust oneself off, and begin again. This is indispensable and the fruit of much prayer, failure and faith. On June 30th, our Becky DeWine School will close for the summer and the we can feel good about completing this 2011-2012 school year, especially in light of the tragedies and difficulties. During July, many of our students will take the Government exams and teachers will receive ongoing formation.
Collaboration With the Archdiocese of P-au-P Educational Office
Moving forward we see the need to strengthen our ties with the local Church and collaborate with their ecucation office to create more responsibiltiy and independence for our Becky DeWine School campuses. Hands Together seeks to slowly "step backward", providing support but withdrawing from details of daily management and problem solving. We've set a transition course and will take gradual steps to bring our schools under the Archdiocesan tent.
Summer Youth Work Projects
On July 2nd we launch our "Summer Youth Work Projects" that gives 100 young people living in Cite Soleil a chance to work for 2 months -- helping to clean, fix, and renovate our school campuses. The program will begin with a large assembly and a talk from the mayor. Each participant will receive a copy of the Francis de Sales "Golden Counsels' and we will try to introduce some basic morality and spirituality.
Here is a brief description of the program and the goals from an email Fr. Tom sent to Doug Campbell,
"Hey Doug, we've had many meetings including the one today. We have divided Site Solei into regions with each region connected to a Hands Together project. This is an opportunity to try to get some young people working this summer.
There will be ten youth working in each group. There will be community leaders who serve as captains and oversee projects to make sure they are completed. The total will be 100 youth, in 9 groups.
Each group must complete the following specific job projects:
- clean each school
- perpare gardens at St. Ann, Miot, St. Veronique
- work on improving soccer field at St. Ann
- work under the supervision of the welding boss and the carpenter to repair all desks and benches and to build new ones at St. Church
- do grounds work at each school
- the crew at St. Joseph will help with the cement work
- the crew at St. veronica will help putting up iron railin leading to roof plus security on roof
- groups will help put up more security wire at different schools
- Bellecourt will help to repair damage at cemetary done by earthquake
N.B. Each week captains will meet with their teams to review the progress. Each day, the members will gather with their captain to pray the Golden Councils”