Social Project: Growing our Parental Heart to Resemble God
Prepared by CARP Romania
On the 3rd of March 2017, after some beautiful sunny days that marked the beginning of a new month and more importantly of a new season, we visited a 25-year-old teacher who attended a program for fresh professionals in the education domain – Teach for Romania, at her school in Galbinasi, Calarasi county. The country-side was a good reminder that life isn’t always easy or fair, but that it’s a real battle for survival.
We had planned for the event for about 2 weeks and prior to visiting the village we also donated some children’s clothes for the ones that have a lower economic situation at home. We were happy to be able to work with some of the teachers and the principle of the school and hopefully D. can later on become Peace Ambassador, as she already attended several CARP activities.
On the decided day – Friday – we gathered early in the morning, at 7:30 AM in the train station. We were all very nervous and excited and it felt as if we are going to enter in another world and so it was. The hills that we could see from the train window were very modest in what they have to offer. Despite the beauty of the morning sky, the sight of poor houses and old fences made us think about the contrast between the capital and an usual Romanian village.
The internal goal that we had was: Grow our parental heart and have initiative in practicing true love. And our external goal was to visit 7 classes (1 class of kinder garden, 2 classes of fifth graders, 2 classes of seventh graders and 2 classes of eight graders) with the purpose of motivating the children’s curiosity and openness towards different cultures, religions and backgrounds and to encourage them to learn and speak the English language.
When we arrived, and heading towards the school, we met the teacher and some of the students that were coming to pick us up with a WELCOME banner made from different papers on which each student wrote a different big letter W-E-L-C-O-M-E. We were so touched by this initiative and later on we could discover how talented these children are and how much potential resides in each and every one of them. They prepared a big map of Galbinasi, including the most important places, each drawn on a small piece of paper: the City hall, the school, the pizza place, the Police station and many others. They also prepared songs and Martisoare (traditional symbolical gift that girls receive at the beginning of spring), one boy played the clarinet and some of them presented dances.
Each STF member presented them- selves as well as some small things that they like, hobbies, family, about food and the English teacher was the best mediator for the two sides. We played games together and sang songs from the Holy Songs Book. We then took pictures together and promised to keep in touch. The children were very enthusiastic and some of them even promised to start studying better in order to be prepared for the next time they meet a foreigner. We tried to engage in the games and be creative and affectionate towards all the children as they are in a great need to be noticed and praised for their efforts and initiative.
The first class of students and the youngest ones acted very well and some were quite shy but there were also other 2 classes where we could see a lot of misbehavior. There is a great gap sometimes between the treatment that these children receive at home and what society wants from them and even a bigger gap between all this and the ideal self that God has envisioned for human beings. Childhood is a time for learning, discovery and also receiving a lot of love from parents and elders but we could see in some of the children the tensioned atmosphere that they are probably experiencing at home and in the village.
This experience is very good to realize that we can all contribute to ensuring a high-quality education for every child in Romania!
After the activity was over we returned to the CARP Peace Center – downtown Bucharest to share about our experience. We were all quite shocked in the best way by the children’s effort to prepare for our arrival, by the teacher’s parental heart and great attitude in even the most chaotic moments in the class and I believe that all of us could appreciate that being a true teacher, then a true owner but most importantly a True Parent is not an easy task. Educating, caring and guiding somebody is an extraordinary effort that involves every part of a human being: intellect, emotion and will. But as much as we can practice and offer our help, we can learn to take care of our society and establish a new culture of heart that can bring God closer to the people.
Thank you so much for your prayers, love and support. We hope that we could have brought some hope to Galbinasi and some comfort for Heavenly Parent’s heart.!