With our urgent call from last week we would like to help the schools and other Waldorf educational institutions that are affected by the economic consequences of the Corona crisis. Every day we receive reports of the special situations of these projects, which we would like to share with you here.
During this time of the Corona pandemic some schools find it difficult to keep children and their families in the school community when parents lose their jobs and their incomes. The Escuela Libre Micael, founded in 2013 in the southwest of Buenos Aires, is doing its best to hold the school community together. All the teachers decided to reduce their salaries to 75% and the parents promised to pay as much as they can for school fees. Most of the parents are deeply involved in the school and their shared community project. They contribute a range of goods and products for sale, organise markets and bazaars, hold seminars and workshops, and stage performances - all to raise money for their school. Strong school communities that work together, for each other, are better equipped to survive crisis and cope with external deprivation and, in doing so, work to shape their future opportunities.Learn more
Almost three years ago, as part of their voluntary service, Elisabeth Rybak and Paula Kiefer built a kindergarten in Misiones in the rainforest of Argentina. Elisabeth and Paula and other volunteers, who have worked in the kindergarten, continue to their support. They collect donations, run a blog and recently, they made a wonderful film about the kindergarten and the Mbaya-Guaraní culture.Learn more
The Guainumbi social therapy facility is located on the outskirts of São Paulo in Brazil. It works with people with disabilities who come from disadvantaged and vulnerable families. Normally, they receive three meals a day and take part in therapeutic workshops such as baking, carpentry, music, theatre, dance and gardening. They also learn reading, writing and arithmetic. The institution started as a small project. Like all schools and community facilities in Brazil, Guainumbi had to close down with the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic. Activities and workshops are now as impossible as eating together. So far, we have been able to provide € 15,470 through donations to our appeal, Mitigainge the consequences of the Corona Crisis. This money will enable the families of the people we care for to be provided with food and hygiene supplies for three months. Twice a month packs are distributed to 118 households.Learn more
Compulsory mask-wearing and temperature monitoring: The new school day at the Hermanus School in South Africa
In South Africa, the number of Covid-19 cases is increasing rapidly. Nevertheless, the government decided to re-open schools in June, including the Hermanus Waldorf School. The majority of the children who go to Hermanus School come from disadvantaged families in the surrounding townships. The Corona crisis has further increased poverty in these locations. In their August newsletter the team of teachers at Hermanus describe the new daily life at the school in a message to donors who support the school.Learn more
The devastating explosions in the port of Beirut on 4th August hit this battered and weakened country hard. Some 5,000 people were injured and at least 135 died and many people are still missing. In recent years, the economic situation in Lebanon has steadily deteriorated. The government is not able to solve substantial problems of infrastructure and supply, while the national currency, the Lebanese pound, is experiencing a sharp depreciation of the exchange rate against the US dollar. Last autumn, demonstrations and unrest expressed the population's anger at the level of political incompetence and corruption, and the unsustainable economic conditions. Beirut is also home to Step Together, a centre for therapeutic education and a social therapy centre. For almost two years there have been no state subsidies for the institution, so it is now completely dependent on donations (as reported in previous newsletters). The facility is located in a part of the city away from the port, and yet it, too, is shaken by this catastrophe, as the director Dr. Reem Mouawad tells us in an email the day after the explosion: ...Learn more