Undeclared war continues in eastern Congo where our partner CENEDI (Center to Mentor Children in Difficulties) works. HAW (Hands Across the Water), our North American youth association, has supported education in Uvira for many years. One challenge now is finding work for the 32 graduates. A wonderful answer to that problem also addresses the local situation: a workshop to teach peace-making skills!
In the photo: sitting in front, L-R: Tamoni Swedi (a starfish, i.e., A.A./ diploma graduate supported by HAW) and Balonde Kimete (Chair person of CENEDI)
Standing in front row, L-R:Bani Georges (the Trainer) in black shirt, Songambele Katembo (in red T-shirt), Sumaili Eyana, Teacher at Kaboke primary school (in white T-shirt), Elizabeth Masoka (in red T-shirt), Safari Kimete (in yellow T-shirt), Kakoba Kangula (a starfish), Maombi Consolate Louise (Member of CENEDI), Angalia Fatuma (Member of CENEDI and Psycho Social Assistant), Furaha Loonga (starfish), Bitangaca Mfumbe (starfish),
Back row, L-R: Ikyeelo M’motoelwa (a teacher at Lwala Primary school), Swedi Sango (member of CENEDI), Sofia Mlebinge Alvine (a teacher at Biesse Primary school), Assumani Louis Djibela (Member of CENEDI and Teacher at Pemba Institute), Mayundo Shauri (a starfish), in green shirt and Ngandu Selemani Bahati (a teacher at Nakatende primary school) in blue shirt.
The Society of Friends (Quakers) has sponsored such projects for years, & some of CENEDI’s leaders are associated with the Quaker community. In May a qualified Quaker facilitator came to Munene (near Uvira) for a 5-day workshop, to teach 5 graduates & CENENI leaders how to create “Peace Clubs” in primary schools. This the first step of a comprehensive & well organized program to extend peace-making into the larger community.
The event was received with delight by the community, which has already asked for more workshops to form more young leaders - & older ones, too!
Thank YOU for Rabbits!
Many thanks to all who joined in our 5K! You did it! Some participated on Facebook, others sent the fruits of your walk-for-rabbits directly. You all are wonderful! The rabbit farm is launched & you have assured that this “teaching how to fish” adventure is off to a good start. A very special thanks to our anonymous donor for matching so many gifts! In our next newsletter we will have photos of the new rabbit farm in progress.
Sewing School Students Earn High Marks in State Certification!
The sewing school has expanded in the Women’s Center. This month 17 young women completed the rigorous national certification: testing literacy, general knowledge, specific understanding of their equipment (how to use & care for their machine), as well as cutting out & creating shirts, dresses, etc. The items to be made are pictured & numbered; each student draws a number out of the hat & has two days to produce it – there are no patterns: creating your own is the norm.
Not only did they all pass: FEBA’s school came out at the very top of all the sewing schools participating! The examiners asked to come to FEBA’s graduation.
Here the young women gathered for prayer & a pep talk before the start of the 4-day exam. They are proud to belong to FEBA. Look at the T-shirts printed with “FEBA.” The young women scraped together the money for their shirts, by themselves!
Mentoring Sewing Projects
FEBA has been mentoring a small school in the Kasai for several years. Here is the latest news from Tshikaji. The school is still recovering from the fighting in 2016-18. Supplies were limited. Students drifted away but with FEBA’s help there are new possibilities. See the beautiful materials & the young women who will be able now to complete their education & have a hopeful future.
Diplomas (A.A.) HURRAH!
Every year FEBA assists destitute young people complete their formal education by a major state exam crowned with a Diploma, about the equivalent of an A.A. This is a high – & expensive – goal, out-of-reach for most young people.
This year FEBA helped 12 students (7 girls, 5 boys) meet the cost of the final year & state exams. All passed, & one young woman did exceptionally well. Rejoicing is in order! Traditionally students throw flour on each other as a sign of success, & the flour was flying!
Meet ANJALI DHAYAGUDE, our newest board member
Anjali is a senior at West Windsor Plainsboro High school North. She has been a part of the Hands Across the Water officer board at Community Middle School since 6th grade & has been the President of the club at the High School for the last two years. She has helped organize & carry out a series of fundraisers & events during her 7 years in HAW. She has now joined Woman Cradle of Abundance to continue to work on the various projects that both organizations have in the Democratic Republic of Congo.