St Paul's HS going globe trotting

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

DURING the next few months four groups from St Paul's High School, Bessbrook will be bringing aid to separate projects all over the globe.

Almost 50 sixth-form students, four teachers, four non-teaching staff members and the school's Chaplain will be taking part in the 2018 projects.

Mrs Bridget McConville introduced St Pauls' new Chaplain, Fr. Seamus White, to the Kenyan project, which was started 15 years ago by Fr Dermot Maloney, in collaboration with St Patrick's Missionaries, Kiltegan.

Miss Jamie Larkin and six students travelled with them to join their host, Fr Martin Barry in Londiani, East Kenya, last week.

During their time there they visited the many schools, clinics, churches and communities that St Paul's have sponsored over the years, to see how their funds have been utilised to provide the basics we take for granted.

The group will meet with Sister Placida, a Franciscan sister in Kericho, who runs the 'Live in Hope Centre', a rehabilitation centre for young mothers with HIV, orphaned and homeless boys, and children learning to live with a HIV diagnosis.

Last weekend Mrs Elaine Cahill, Mrs Maeve McShane and Mrs Patricia McAleavey accompanied 23 students to Brasov in Romania.

This is the fourteenth year St Paul's have given a large group of students the opportunity to visit orphanages, residential care centres, hospitals, daycare centres for young adults with special needs and more.

The students will spend a week visiting and interacting with the children and residents, distributing fresh fruit and vegetables, and providing essential disposable healthcare.

Many bags of children's clothes, football jerseys, babies hats, books, toys and footballs will be distributed throughout the week.

During February Miss Karina Traynor and Mrs Michelle Morgan will travel with another six students to Kirovsk, Russia to visit School 7.

In 2013 Newry and Mourne Council invited St Paul's to initiate a partnership with School 7.

The schools now work together to share educational experiences and different cultures on an annual exchange visit.

Representatives from School 7 have visited Newry and St Paul's in 2013, 2015 and 2017 and this will be the Bessbrook school's third visit to Kirovsk.

School 7 is the top performing school in Maths and Physics in all of Russia and is listed in the top 10 Russian schools.

In June Mrs Marion McMahon and Mr Kevin Kearney will return to Prejmer in Romania, with another 12 students to work with the Peter Pan orphanage.

The team plans to remove the old broken fence and play area that was built almost 10 years ago for a much younger clientele.

St Paul's students will be expected to work hard with both grounds work and building work.

This is the first time the school has taken on a construction role and they are hoping to adapt and develop this programme for future projects.

All of St Pauls' projects require a vast amount of fundraising from the students and their families.

The school wished to pass on its gratitude to the local community who have assisted in supporting the many events that have taken place, as well as to those who have sent in generous donations and to Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, who have sponsored the Russian visit.


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