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Press Release - The Archdiocese of Antelias (Lebanon) and The Constantinian Charitable Trust (UK)

The Archdiocese of Antelias and the Constantinian Charitable Trust are pleased to announce the second stage of their collaboration to assist the Archdiocese in its vital educational work.

 

Starting in 2022 the Trust made several grants to three hard pressed parish schools in the Beirut suburbs: Ecole Maronite St Jean Baptiste (Baouchrieh); St Joseph (Bourj Hamoud); Sacre Coeur (Nabaa). These covered a range of urgently needed repairs (some dating from the Beirut explosion in 2020), school equipment, and most recently 100kgs of urgently requested classroom supplies donated by the parents and pupils of the Cardinal Wiseman School in West London (UK) delivered to Beirut in time for the beginning of the school year by one of the trustees. Expanding the links and support between schools in the UK and Lebanon is one of the aims of the Trust.

Teachers in these schools have become painfully aware of the dramatic escalation in the number of pupils, especially in the younger classes, who exhibit learning difficulties right across the spectrum of the various categories. They currently estimate that between 35-40% of their pupils would fall into this category with a significant impact on classroom progress both of the affected children as well as those not affected. This degree of escalation can be attributed in large part as a direct result of the severe stress imposed on vulnerable communities and families by the country’s economic and financial collapse.

In 2023 the Archdiocese approached the Trust to see if it might assist in raising funds initially for a one-year pilot project to create a Centre for Severe learning Difficulties to be located at Ecole Maronite St Joseph in Bourj Hamoud. Building on that success the Centre’s reach would be extended to cover all three schools and if there was spare capacity it would be open to surrounding schools.

The initial funding requirement for the pilot will be US$50,000. When the project is extended to cover all three schools for an initial period of three years the total funding requirement would increase to US$450,000.

Details regarding the project are available on the Trust website both in summary and in complete form.

 

Beirut and London, 14th March, 2024

Contacts:

Fr Nayef Zinati, Director of Pastoral Schools, Archdiocese of Antelias (Beirut, Lebanon)

Email: nayef_z@hotmail.com

Cristoforo Rocco di Torrepadula, Treasurer - The Constantinian Charitable Trust (London, UK)

E-mail: secretary@constantinianct.com 

Website: www.constantinianct.com

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