The Mary Ward Loreto Education Project celebrated the fruits of this project called “Service Learning” on Monday, January 7th in Lezhe, in Northern Albania. This is where the project was implemented as a pilot project under the leadership of MWL and in joint partnership with the Rogationist school and the local community. Besides the training of all staff in the pilot school, parents became involved and many of the higher students were trained and became the leaders of the action. Two community initiatives were successfully implemented: “Bullying in schools” and “Remembrance not to forget”. The last one was a project dedicated to the terrible impact which the communist regime had specifically, for this project, on the community of Lezhe. Albanians had suffered for 50 years from the tyrannical rule of this Communist regime. The fruits of this initiative were celebrated on the day with local partners, schools, education authorities, parents as well as community members of Lezha.
The project aimed to actively engage the students in solving real problems in the community through projects undertaken and implemented by them. It also helped to improve their communication skills and other aspects of personal development especially in deepening their ability to reflect and work with others and to become active members of the community. It helped both students, school and the community to work together and not to remain in isolation.
This project revealed that the methodology of Service Learning, initiated by CLAYSS in Argentina, as an excellent way to learn through dialogue, reflection and active service, engaging students to acquire new knowledge not only for their personal benefit but also for the benefit of the whole community. The Local Regional Education authorities welcomed the methodology and expressed their gratitude as well as their readiness to collaborate and promote every initiative that promotes a qualitative learning process.
Please click the link below to download:
Ju lutem klikoni në linkun më poshtë për të shkarkuar librin udhëzues:
Aferdita Gjoni: Project Coordinator Mary Ward Loreto
Each 5th of September marks the celebration of Saint Teresa’s Sanctification Day in Albania. Mother Teresa officially became “Saint Teresa of Kolkata” on the 5th of September 2016, which was 19 years to the day after her passing in 1997.
Saint Teresa Sanctification Day is considered a public holiday, which is a highly significant event for the people of Albania.
Born in Skopje, Macedonia in 1910, Mother Teresa’s given name was Anjeza Gonxhe Bojaxhiu. Mother Teresa held Indian citizenship and founded the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta in 1950. For almost 50 years she ministered to the dying, orphaned, sick, and poor in India and also in other countries.
Albanians do not work on this day. While Albania does not have an official religion and considers all religions equal, the people are proud of the legacy that Saint Teresa left as a Catholic nun. On this day, many Albanians attend mass to celebrate Saint Teresa’s memory. They also pray novenas asking for help from the Saint for their problems or causes.
Mother Teresa of Calcutta is a link of Albania with the Mary Ward Loreto Foundation. She became a Loreto nun in 1928 and served in the Loreto mission in India for twenty years before founding her own congregation “The Missionaries of Charity”. Now Mary Ward’s Congregation serves in every continent in the world, mainly through the mission of education and justice, enabling people to reach the potential which they were created to achieve.
Mother Teresa spent 20 years as a Loreto Sister. All through her life the ties and friendship between herself and the Institute remained firm, and she was personally known to many of our sisters, especially in India. Much has been written about Mother Teresa over the years, and many books, films and documentaries have been produced.
For more info please read the booklet of Saint Teresa of Calcutta:
The award ceremony took place on March 15 in Bristol. The short film competition was announced by the organisation Unchosen who use the power of film in fight against-modern slavery.
“Ivan died at the age of 48, at the consequences of the disease less than two years after his rescue. It was on February 7, 2016 – the eve of Saint Bakhita´s Day, the patron of trafficked victims….”
See the winning film:
She is a mother of two teenage sons and a married daughter. Thanks to her many strong qualities: her courage, her fearlessness to cope with the judgments of the community where she lives and her family’s judgments , economic problems, different governmental and non governmental institutional challenges in accessing the necessary services ,she denounced her abusive husband and decided to divorce. She said ‘No’ to domestic violence and abuse .Her husband was inprisoned because of the domestic violence but within a few days he will be released from prison.
MWL has referred her case to the Social Services in Fier’s Municipality and in collaboration with other governmental and non governmental institutions, the life of this courageous woman and her son took a different path. She chose to live far away from living every minute, every day with the fear of losing her life instead she has now chosen to live in a shelter. She feels safe and released from anxiety and panic.
MWL also followed up her case with counselling, giving relevant information and engaging her in a free tailoring course.
As we know this is the fifth year of the MWL Foundation in Albania. During these years we have encountered big challenges and especially the fact that Albania has a population experiencing years of transition. This is not easy. The mission of the MWL Foundation is wide-ranging and includes tackling problems which are blocking change in Albania in the movement towards growth and new life.
The MWL focus is to stop the phenomenon of trafficking by helping people to realise their potential and the values and talents which they have through economic and social empowerment. Being the first Foundation to deal with the broader work in rural and vulnerable areas of the country, it has taken much hard work and, of course, more funding. Our geographic extent has also had a great impact, especially in the vulnerable and isolated areas of the country. This is a potential that has made us closer to these people through inclusive projects that have influenced the integration and strengthening of our focus groups. Collaboration and partnerships have been welded with many and this has helped MWL in the work to eliminate human trafficking in Albania. This needs to be further consolidated to reach an even better result in this focused work of the MWL mission.
Challenges faced that have been part of this journey have been: the registration process, coping with failures of the state, the challenge of funding and domestic donors, the work to achieve cooperation with the local authorities, finding the right partnerships, the country’s culture, geography, lack of education and the isolation in the rural areas. Despite all of these challenges and because of the excellence achieved by this foundation and the strength of the team, MWL has taken the risk to develop the work even further. It is hoped that in the following years Albania will alleviate poverty where they work and Human Trafficking will be a phenomenon of history.