Hello to St Swithin’s Primary School Southsea and thank you so much for welcoming Maureen Thompson our CAFOD school visitor to your school this week. We hope you enjoyed the workshops on Special Places and On The Move, and maybe you will be able to take part in a Share the Journey walk to show your concern for families who have to flee their homes because of war, drought and lack of food.
Maureen told us all about her visits.
“I have made two visits to St Swithins Primary School in the last week to coincide with Refugee week. Firstly I visited the 3 year 3and 4 classes. We talked about journeys started with the varied ways people get to school, to special holidays abroad often to see grandparents and other relations in other countries. This helped introduce the theme we were highlighting of how CAFOD works to help people who sometimes have to go on forced journeys and then become refugees . We highlighted the stories of Ruth, Hilma Dianer and Muhammad who all had to leave their home countries for different reasons.
Finally I showed the pictures the children had drawn to help them remember home and to think about the special places that made them feel safe. The children asked lots of questions and thought about how it might feel to have to leave their home before drawing their own pictures of what made their homes special and some of their dreams for the future.
A few days later I visited years 5 and 6 and together the children divided up into imaginary family groups who had to leave home quickly because they were in danger. This simulation game gave the children opportunities to deepen their understanding of what it might be like to have to leave everything you know behind including friends. Again the children were able to express how they might feel in a similar situation – scared , terrified , angry sad, depressed ,lonely. At the end we gathered together to discuss the things we could do – to pray, act and give highlighting particularly the Pope’s Campaign supported by CAFOD’s Share the Journey.
Thank you to all the staff and children at St Swithins for welcoming me and taking such an active part in the workshops.”
Many thanks to Maureen for visiting St Swithun’s Primary and for organising the workshops, and to all the children, staff and parents for their support of CAFOD.