Hello to all you lovely people at St Mary and St Michael’s primary in Guernsey! I spent a lovely morning there at the beginning of March, giving an assembly on Tabita’s story and her very own Supergoat, only to find that the story inspired a Super Hero day!
During the assembly, back in March, the children heard about a special goat that was given to Tabita’s family a few years ago during one of Kenya’s driest years since 1950. The drought meant that farming families like Tabita’s were left with destroyed crops and many of their animals died.
Sometimes, during that time, Tabita’s mum went without food for three days and her children were upset because they did not have enough to eat. Tabita’s mum would often go without food so that her children could eat and Tabita herself grew very ill and weak.
Thanks to the goat that a CAFOD partner provided for the family, Tabita was able to have really nutritious milk. The family call their goat ‘Supergoat’ because it’s a special German alpine breed that can live for long periods of time when there is no water to drink because of a lack of rain.
The children also learned that Supergoat can produce 2 litres of milk a day, whereas a local goat in Kenya can only produce 250ml.
But it’s not just the milk that the goat brings. By selling the milk the family can earn money to buy food and used for many other things like hiring a tractor to plough the land so that they can grow food.
At the end, we all thought about the things that we could do such as praying for the children around the world that they may have their fair share of food or thinking about the different foods that we eat and finding out where they come from. We also talked about fundraising to help families feed themselves today, tomorrow and in the future.
I shared with them this picture of CAFOD volunteer Mike Boswell (see the CAFOD blog) http://cafodsalford.wordpress.com/2013/02/22/super-goat-comes-to-salford/ who actually dresses up as Supergoat for his assemblies. Unfortunately I couldn’t get my costume through customs!
The children and teachers then thought they’d hold their own Super Hero Day to fundraise for CAFOD and I think that might be tomorrow – so look out for some great photos soon!
After assembly, Year 5 and 6 thought about some of the causes of hunger and why the current global food system isn’t working for millions of people by playing the excellent ‘Can you beat the system’ game produced by Oxfam.
Pupils had to imagine they were small scale farmers living in a less economically developed country who make their living by growing food (in this case maize – the same staple diet as Tabita’s family) to sell at local market. Each group had to produce a crop by drawing/cutting out as many maize as they could in 10 minutes. Everyone started off with exactly the same materials but after 10 minutes different groups received different news. Some groups had been hit by extreme weather, some had to cope with high food prices and one group had their land bought by a wealthy company so they could not longer farm it. O dear. They were not happy!
But after the session, pupils thought about how it felt when their crops were destroyed and they had to start from nothing or how they felt about half their materials being taken away when food prices began to rise and they had to sell their materials to get by. However one group had received investment from the government and produced more than anyone else.
We then discussed what would happen if farmers were supported like this in the real world (which has happened in some countries such as Vietnam) and what would happen if they weren’t supported.
What a great morning and a fabulous opportunity for us to say a BIG THANK YOU to everyone at St Mary’s and St Michael’s for all their support for CAFOD.
Thank you so much to Headteacher Helen Shepherd and all the teachers, pupils, parents and staff who made me feel so welcome and who threw themselves into all the activities with such enthusiasm! Just brilliant!
For more information on CAFOD’s Lenten appeal, please go to http://www.cafod.org.uk/Fundraise
For more information on the ‘Can you beat the system’ workshop please go to