We are delighted to be working on an ongoing charity project, raising funds for children in Rwanda who are so much less fortunate than our children.
Why have we chosen Rwanda?
When the Sisters of St Mary of Namur (SSMN) arrived here from Belgium in 1896, their intention was to start a school for Bishop's Stortford's Catholic community.
They achieved this in 1909 when they opened St Joseph’s school and they also work with communities in Rwanda. We feel it is important to celebrate the great commitment of the Sisters to our community and would like to support their work in Rwanda.
For further information click on the link www.bcpp.org.uk/rwanda.htm
Successful projects so far
During our centenary celebrations in 2009 former pupils, current staff and pupils performed a concert in St. Joseph’s church. Due to the success of the concert, and additional generous donations we were able to send over £4000 to Rwanda. This resulted in the sponsorship of three children and enabled them to continue their education.
We still receive Christmas cards and academic reports from Cynthia, Marc and Claudine. Sister Susan who works with the children in Rwanda wrote: ‘Thank you for your generosity. Your help gives encouragement and hope to these children for a better future and enables them to live with dignity knowing that others care and value them.’
What were the next steps?
We asked the parents and children for their opinion on which projects to fundraise for.
Possible options were
Sponsoring a child for 1 year
Buying classroom furniture
Building a classroom
Medical funding for the community e.g. vaccinations
At the parent consultations, parents had the opportunity to find out more information about the projects and vote for their preferred option.
Sister Judith (Sisters of Namur) came to talk to the children about how our fundraising will help the communities in Rwanda.
The Rwandese children were so touched that we cared about them and wanted to help them, via Sister Judith, they sent us some skilfully woven gifts. One gift, a basket, appeared empty but was filled with the only thing the children could afford, the gift of their love and gratitude.
Our parents and pupils voted to provide the funds to build a classroom. As of 2015, the school has raised a further £5000.00 from sponsored fun days, movie nights and 'St Joseph's Got Talent' events.