Hello to all the students at St George College in Southampton who recently took part in some special workshops with our Education Volunteers from the University of Southampton Catholic Society. The workshops, entitled ‘On the Move’, invited each young person to follow a refugee family on their journey to safety.
Each group of students gathered together to simulate the journey of a family escaping from dangers of war. A picture map was used to chart the progress of the hazardous journey and students were asked to choose what they would take with them from a list of belongings.
During the session, our volunteers led groups through different stages of the story and at each stage the students had to make choices between what to leave behind and what to keep with them. These choices represented some of the real-life dilemmas which many refugees face.
After the activity, the students reflected on the decisions they had made during their journey and how they felt.
Watch Samira’s story, a Syrian girl that now lives in a Lebanon refugee camp (click film below).
The workshops were held as part of a special Day of Faith run by the school ending in Mass where there was a special prayer around the Lampedusa Cross (pictured below).
On the 3rd October 2013, a boat carrying 500 refugees from Eritrea and Somalia, sank off the little island of Lampedusa between Tunisia and Sicily. Only 151 people survived. The local carpenter on Lampedusa met some of the survivors and then went and collected some of the wreckage of the boat. He made crosses for the survivors as a symbol of hope for the future.
During the workshop, the volunteers invited students to write or draw a message of hope for refugees on paper crosses in the shape of the one that Francesco Tuccio the carpenter on Lampedusa island made. CAFOD will dedicate their messages at a special Mass at the end of the Year of Mercy, and make sure they are shared with refugees through CAFOD’s and other networks.
Thank you to all the students and teachers at St George Catholic College for all your support and thank you too to all our Education Volunteers from the University of Southampton Catholic Society and our Volunteer Coordinator, Steve Deadman, for facilitating such an important workshop!