Mary Ward Loreto Foundation in Albania, Christmas Edition No. 11th, 2018.
Introduction for MWL Christmas Newsletter
As a child, this was the season of snow sweeping. Our parents encouraged us to think of others, the pennies earned from the snow sweeping were all given for the children who were starving in Africa. This was no bravado act but just part of life at this time, as was singing as a family in the maternity ward on Christmas day hoping to bring cheer to Mother’s awaiting a new birth. MWL is following in this tradition in a country where volunteering was forced during the communist regime as a form of slave labour. To reintroduce volunteering and fund giving for charity, is difficult in most East European countries because of this stigma, which remains in the mentality… click here for more.
Mary Ward Loreto Newsletter No. 10, 2018, Summer Edition.
Introduction for Summer Newsletter, No. 10.
Just now, thanks to our newly appointed development officer, we have presented the last six months report (cf www.albaniahope.com). This is filled with data and information of the incredible work of MWL staff who work tirelessly in every aspect of the mission in Albania against human trafficking, a pandemic in our world today, enslaving millions of people.
What have been the struggles throughout this short period? What are the blocks to progress in MWL’s work of prevention, awareness raising, direct action, advocacy, and campaigning against human trafficking?….
Easter Edition, MWL Newsletter No. 9, 2018. Introduction for Easter Newsletter: It seems appropriate that this introduction is being written on March 8th, the day when we remember human rights for women all over the world. This morning nearly all of the MWL staff were engaged in women’s rights events, even the men! The march was led by many women but also men took a leadership role, working for human rights for all. Together we can make such a difference. Since the last newsletter there has been an explosion of activity led by the staff of MWL in their work to eliminate human trafficking. It is important therefore to thank them for their dedicated passion and commitment to this mission of transforming society through the transformation of the most vulnerable in this place. The varied articles in the newsletter express the breadth of the action and the challenge which the field presents in a country where statutory systems are still not functioning and where the level of dire poverty grows every day. The law is weak leaving many people redeemed helpless even when they desire to fend for themselves. What is to be done to make a real difference? Networking is always the answer and speaking out together as one voice….
Easter Edition, MWL Newsletter No. 9, 2018.
Introduction for Easter Newsletter: It seems appropriate that this introduction is being written on March 8th, the day when we remember human rights for women all over the world. This morning nearly all of the MWL staff were engaged in women’s rights events, even the men! The march was led by many women but also men took a leadership role, working for human rights for all. Together we can make such a difference.
Since the last newsletter there has been an explosion of activity led by the staff of MWL in their work to eliminate human trafficking. It is important therefore to thank them for their dedicated passion and commitment to this mission of transforming society through the transformation of the most vulnerable in this place.
The varied articles in the newsletter express the breadth of the action and the challenge which the field presents in a country where statutory systems are still not functioning and where the level of dire poverty grows every day. The law is weak leaving many people redeemed helpless even when they desire to fend for themselves. What is to be done to make a real difference? Networking is always the answer and speaking out together as one voice….
Christmas Edition, MWL Newsletter No. 8, 2017.
At the end of this year Mary Ward Loreto will be moving into the 5th Anniversary of the Foundation. We are preparing to celebrate this time of achievement with significant events, in which we hope you will participate, in every way possible. We are grateful as we look back at the many new beginnings over these years, lessons learnt and fruitful action achieved in many rural and isolated regions of Albania. It is a time for rejoicing, of wonder and expectation. It is in the midst of great poverty experienced that the mission is unfolding. It is truly incredible how people, with very little, can find hope and new life. The ability to break through their boundaries and find personal achievement, new skills and growth into a fuller experience of life and freedom, is truly remarkable for so many of the beneficiaries. For this and many other gifts we are very grateful.
As we move forward into this anniversary year in celebration and hope, we will continue to break through our boundaries, with new projects in ‘’Service Learning in Education’’ and ‘’Learning, Practicing and Influencing Integrity Fellowship’’ in partnership with one of the municipalities in Lezhe. All the MWL projects are exploring new ways for ensuring human and economic empowerment for the many. Strategies for systemic change in the confrontation of patriarchy and the many areas of abuse committed against so many, is a priority.
This newsletter has a different format which we hope you will find more interesting to read and share with others. We hope the home page gives you a more comprehensive outline of our news over these past few months.
This year of celebration reminds us again that new life is achieved by the many and that however small this may be, together we can make a difference. Happy Christmas to you all and Peace and joy for the New Year.
Imelda Poole IBVM (President MWL)
Mary Ward Loreto Foundation: MWL Newsletter No. 7, July 2017.
There is an Albanian saying: ‘Welcome is the best dish on the table’. Over the last month I have been the recipient of wonderful hospitality in many places and for this and always, for any person travelling, we are forever grateful. Throughout this time conversations have been flowing around innumerable tables, seeing beauty in the natural world in which we live, local story-telling, reminiscing and frequently joining the rest of the world in trying to find a solution to painful world issues. This week I am back to another reality here in Albania and have travelled to Saranda; here there is a stunning sea coast that is open to thousands of tourists every year. As in many other tourist parts of Albania, Mary Ward Loreto Women are extremely busy making crafts to be sold in the tourist markets as a way of welcoming the stranger to these shores and for economic empowerment. The question is: why are some of the most famous markets at heritage centres closed for these and many other industrious sellers who want to make Albania more welcoming by the beauty created at the hands of the people? In Butrint the British Foundation wrote in their contract that the local people were to be engaged in this centre. They desired this involvement as a matter of justice and to share local culture with the tourists. We have an election in two weeks. Is the nose in the ground by decision makers? Every year there is some problem created until eventually the markets are open – too late- but trade goes on. We continue to talk, to puzzle about such injustice.
Wishing you a very happy Summer time!
Imelda Poole IBVM (President MWL)
Albania is surrounded by mountains which cover 60% of its surface and which wondrously embrace the landscape no matter where you travel. Whilst writing the next 5 year strategic plan, MWL staff went to Mount Dajti which remained our home for the week. It was an awesome experience driving higher and higher to this place, sensing the power of these naturally immense and mighty structures enveloping the landscape. How many reflective people choose this place to be silent, to stop and gaze and wonder and stare? Our plans emerged during the time we spent in the midst of such beauty and such majesty. We climbed and walked around, stood and gazed with wonder; we experienced ice storms, snow and rain, cold, heat and sun, all in one week. Did it make us stop and stare? We like to think that the creativity and dreams realized were the fruit of such wonder!
The following stories, events, trainings and activities say a little of what went before this event and we hope you have the time to stop and listen and wonder a little at the courage of many.
Wishing you all a very Happy Easter!
Imelda Poole (President MWL)
This is MWL’s fifth newsletter and we hope that it will brighten your Advent season with news from MWL up and down the country. We tell stories from the areas, share best practice and new initiatives which have taken place since our last newsletter. It is Christmas time and may this news inspire you to join with us in our attempt to make a small difference in this part of the world, with joy in all of our hearts and a spring in our step!
Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote a story called The Beggar Boy at Christ’s Christmas Tree. It starts in a dark, freezing, miserable hovel in Petersburg. A six year-old boy dressed in rags sits alone next to his mother who has just died. He’s nearly starving, so he goes out in search of food. As he walks through the empty streets he looks into the houses and sees that they are filled with happy children celebrating Christmas. He knocks on several doors, but no one lets him in. Frightened by some older boys, the little boy takes refuge in a yard behind a pile of wood. There, he freezes to death. However, before dying the little boy dreams of the party of Christ’s Christmas tree, a party for all the child-victims of social injustice. There, he’s reunited with his mother, and they both join the festivities and are filled with joy.
The next St Bakhita day of Prayer which soon follows this Christmas season, is to be dedicated to Child Trafficking. For many of us working in the field of human trafficking, the story of Dostoevsky is not far from home. Perhaps this Christmas we can spare a thought and a prayer for the thousands of children trafficked into slave labour, street begging and a life of poverty and neglect.Let us wake up at Christmas to the story of love and open our hearts to those we do not see but whom we care to see on the edges of our own society but hidden in the gaps and cracks of our streets.
Mary Ward Loreto wishes you all peace and joy deep in your hearts, as we unite together at this very special time.
Imelda Poole (IBVM)
We would like to present to you the forth issue of Mary Ward Loreto Newsletter. In this newsletter you will find the latest news and events that took place since last newsletter.
We hope you enjoy reading these pieces of our news from Mary Ward Loreto in Albania.
Wishing you a very happy Summer time,
We would like to present to you the third issue of Mary Ward Loreto Newsletter.
In this newsletter you will find the latest news, events and the stories.
We hope you enjoy reading these pieces of our news from Mary Ward Loreto in Albania.
Wishing you a very Happy Easter!
We would like to present to you the second issue of Mary Ward Loreto Newsletter.
We hope you enjoy reading it.
Wishing you a very happy Christmas!
Welcome to our partners, donors, colleagues and friends reading this first newsletter from Mary Ward Loreto. We are delighted to present the news and events of the last few months. We hope this form of communication will bring many more partners into our network. By sharing news about our projects and partnerships we will widen our reach and achieve an increased response from others working in the same field as Mary Ward Loreto.