Many thanks to St Swithun’s Primary in Portsmouth for welcoming back our fantastic school volunteers Patrick & Isobel Flynn. They came to talk to the children about CAFOD’s new Power To Be campaign. One in six people are still living without electricity, the hopes of millions of the world’s children are too often a distant dream. Local, renewable energy is usually the cheapest, fastest and most efficient solution to bring power to the poorest communities. It can help families to lift themselves out of poverty, without harming the world we share.
Patrick and Isobel told us all about the assembly. “We were given a really warm welcome back to St Swithun’s as Mr Olive introduced us and told the children that we were back for a really special and important assembly. We were delighted that the children remembered us and that they all knew that we were from CAFOD. After we lit our candle, and said a short prayer to offer our assembly to Jesus, we talked about the “Village that came to Life” through the provision of local electricity.
We asked the children to think what they had used electric power for in the previous 24 hours. There were numerous, and varied, responses from iPad to toaster and from light bulb to mobile phone charger. It was obvious that everyone had used power in one way or another. We had brought a few things along, too, such as an ice-cube tray (to cool our fresh juice), a story book and an exercise book, a saucepan (for boiling water for our tea and coffee because Patrick had broken our electric kettle!), a mobile-phone charger, a light bulb and some vegetables. Many of these item were the same as those mentioned by the children and, indeed, the same as items used by the villagers in Kenya.
We told the children about the importance of power to the villagers of the local community for their livelihood , their health, their education and improved habitability. We asked the children to help the villagers to achieve their potential and to help the children to achieve their dreams for the future by signing individual petitions to the UK Executive Director of The World Bank.
We suggested, too, that each Class could create a “Power To Be” sun and attach sun rays to it in the form of messages of hope, support, prayers and suggestions. These would be about how local, sustainable power can really help people who live in remote areas around the world where there is no mains power. We asked them to be as imaginative as possible and to send us pictures of their suns that we can share later”.
Many thanks to the children, staff and parents at St Swithun’s Primary for your support of CAFOD and also thank you to Patrick & Isobel for visiting St Swithun’s and sharing the Power to Be assembly with the children.