Saint Joseph's 2018 Lenten Project is for St Gemma's School in India (run by Passionists)
Donations total reached: 27,000€. Goal of €25,000 has been reached THANKS TO ST JOSEPH'S LENTEN DONATORS
Here is the "letter of thanks" sent by Fr Paul , Vice-Provincial of the Passionists in India, responsible for St Gemma's School Renovation Project
A brief outline with background:- St. Gemma Matriculation School is in Randham Korattur Village, Tamil Nadu, South India. The school is run by the Passionists & reaches out to 750 children with enrolments increasing year on year. It caters to around 65 villages, hamlets and settlements scattered within an 18kms radius with a population of over 31,500 persons with 1100 of them being Christians. The population consists mostly of labourers and peasants engaged in subsistence seasonal farming heavily dependent on rains. Others are engaged as modest livestock herders and small-scale home industries.
The entire district is basically an impoverished area with most living in impecuniosity; that meant children were required to work instead of studying. The Passionists run the school with lower fees and by raising parents awareness by counselling them that education will provide better lives thereby uplifting themselves and their families, this has yielded better attendances.
Hot and dry weather round the year and the average temperature ranges from a maximum of 43.5°C to a seldom minimum of 18.4°C. The monsoons generally are between mid-June and September. Hottest months being April through mid-June
The revised project plan is to serve 2 classrooms in a one storey building (ground and first). This is to include the foundation with basic classrooms. The total cost is outlined to be in the region of €25,000/- covering 1,246 square feet.
Latest News: Greetings from India! ...Thanks a lot for keeping me posted on the progress of your fund-raising drive. It certainly looks very promising and, as I mentioned before, very humbling to see the generosity of all the parishioners and hard work of people...I had a meeting with our community in Randham. It was a fruitful discussion and sharing. The following decisions were reached at that meeting:
- A time-frame was worked out for the execution of the project. Accordingly, this week we will be getting a re-worked plan for the school building and next week we will evaluate the estimated cost of construction quoted by several contractors and settle on one that would be reasonable (the contract will be only a labour contract; the materials will be procured by us and thus we will be able to cut down the cost as well as ensure the quality of the material). Once we have finalized on the contract, the work can begin.
- The actual ground-breaking and construction can begin by the middle or the third week of April. Our expectation, if all goes well, is to complete the work by the end of June or latest by the middle of July.
- The work will be supervised by Fr. Vimal Backiyaraj, C.P., one of the community members at Randham.
I am sure all together we will be able to do a good job. Thank you for all of St. Joseph’s Paris’ hard work! I am sending a photo of the staff of St. Gemma School in Randham together with the Passionist Community...Take care and have a good week. Paul --
Fr. Paul Cherukoduth, CP, St. Thomas Vice Province, Passionist Jyotir Bhavan, Carmelaram PO, Bangalore 560035
staff and Passionist community
Video of the Indian Republic Day at the School