Kids at Risk Project: Suriname

By July 1, 2018 WDP2018

Bible Society Australia

Goal

The goal of this project is to help children who are living in circumstances that are not ideal for their growth. Most of these children are neglected by their families and come from one-parent homes. With this project the Bible Society is aiming to reach a helping hand towards these children by providing them schoolbags with school supplies a snack and a bottle of juice. The distribution of the schoolbags is part of a special day of celebration program where the kids are encouraged in a child-friendly way to keep on doing their best in school. As part of the Bible Society’s strategy, children’s Bible are also distributed to these children so they can receive and hear the message of God’s hope and love.

 

Introduction

In the preparation phase of this project (February-April), the Bible Society has selected schools in the different districts of Suriname. Based on this selection, the Bible Society sent a permission letter to the head of these schools for permission and also to inform them about the implementation of the kids at risk project. The head of these schools are asked to select a number of children from their schools that are living in circumstances that are not ideal for their growth. The Bible Society purchased the schoolbags and school supplies locally. Therefore, requests for quotations have been sent to different suppliers and also letters for donation to various companies in Suriname. It is worth mentioning that 2 suppliers were willing to offer discounted rates for the schoolbags and the school supplies. Only 1 institution reacted positively on our request for donation. The institution donated 250 lunch bags for this project. The Bible Society decided to purchase the schoolbags and the school supplies at these 2 suppliers because they are sold for a reasonable price and their offer for the discounted rates, this compared to other suppliers. At some point the suppliers did not had the requested amount of schoolbags and school supplies in stock so the Bible Society had to wait for their order. In May Suriname was surprised with heavy rains were streets, schools yards were struggling with waterlogging. Despite the disadvantages, the Bible Society was able to implement the project in May with God’s grace and wisdom. The children were very excited about the day of celebration and were very happy when they received their schoolbags with school supplies and their children Bible. The teachers were also happy and thankful to the Bible Society for this kind gesture. In some cases, children went to school without having a decent schoolbag, so they have to put their school stuff in plastic bags. After the celebration day, these children went home with a happy face, a thankful heart and a new schoolbag. For many of the children they never had their own children’s Bible. Receiving their own Bible was for them like receiving a present for the first time. When the Bibles were given to the children, you could read the joy from their faces. It went on these to toddler and child Bibles which were given to children from the toddler to the fourth grade. The pupils of the fifth and sixth grades were given the Bible in plain language. They flipped enthusiastically in the Bibles. With permission of the teachers and parents, the Bible Society took pictures and testimonies of the children who received schoolbags and a children’s Bible. All the schools have extended their gratitude.

 

Testimonies

At the end of each celebration day, testimonies were taken from children. At Sunny point 1, Sunnypoint 2 and Clarkeschool, each 3 children were interviewed for testimonies.

  • Name: Ligium

Ligium is 14 years of age and is a pupil in the 4th grade of Pontbuiten. He lives with his grandparents together with his 2 brothers and 1 sister. He goes to church with his grandmother. In church he learns songs, how to pray and to be obedient. He is very happy with his new schoolbag because it was time to replace his torned schoolbag. My grandparents are retired, so they are financially dependant on the money of their retirement. It is very difficult for them to raise 4 children on their own. Ligium is also very happy with his new Bible. He will bring his own Bible to the church and he will share his testimony with the children from the church. On the celebration day, Ligium had nothing to eat at school. He was very happy and thankful to receive a snack and a bottle of juice to consume.

 

  • Name: Cheniva

Cheniva is 12 years and goes to Ephramzege (6th grade). She lives with her mother and 3 sisters and 2 brothers. She is happy to receive a new schoolbag with school supplies because each year she had to bring the same old schoolbag to school. It motivates her to do her best in school. She does go to church with her mom but not very often. Receiving her own Bible motivates her to go to church frequently so that she can listen to God’s word and read out of her own Bible.

 

  • Name: Fanara

Fanara is 15 years and goes to Marowijne 2. Fanara is very happy to receive a new schoolbag and her own Bible. She is thankful to be selected to receive these because she does not get a new schoolbag every year. She will make good use of the schoolbag an the Bible with special care because it is for the the first time to receive a Bible.

  • Name: Joel

Joel is 10 years of age and also goes to Marowijne 2. Joel does not go to church very often. But by receiving his own Bible and a new schoolbag he wants to go to church fequently to thank God for the schoolbag and the Bible. He will tell his family and friends about the celebration day so that they will also go to church with him. He will make good use of the schoolbag and the school supplies because schoolbags and supplies are very expensive in Suriname.

 

  • Name: Cedric

Cedric is 16 years and goes to Sunnypoint 1. He lives with 7 people in one house. He has never visited a church. He is very happy to be selected to receive a schoolbag and a Bible. He has to repeat classes over and over again. With this gesture, he is inspired to and will do his utmost to get excellent grades.

 

  • Name: Angela

Angela is 9 years and goes to Clarkeschool. She lives with her mom and 4 brothers in one house. She goes to church with her mom if her mom is free from work. My mom is the only breadwinner in house and she has to take care of 5 children. My mom works very hard to buy school supplies for all her children. Due to the economic situation of the country, everything has become very expensive. Angela was not sure if her mom is able to buy new schoolbags and school supplies for all her children. Angela is very surpirsed and happy to receive a new schoolbag with school supplies. She will tell her mom about this celebration day and will read the Bible with her housemates and friends. She will make good use and with special care of the new schoolbag and the Bible.

 

Quotes

  • Name: Siarra

‘I’m happy with the new schoolbag. I am also very happy with my own Bible because I have never had a Bible. I will tell all my friends about this day’.

 

  • Name: Marches

‘I’m happy with the new schoolbag, this is a very good inspiration for me to do my best in school.’

 

  • Name: Usher

‘The schoolbag is very nice. I am thankful to receive a schoolbag and a Bible. It is for me the first time I have my own Bible in my hands.’

 

  • Name: Tadjeirio

‘I’m very grateful that the teacher selected me to receive a new schoolbag and a Bible. My parents will be very happy that they don’t need to buy me a schoolbag this year. I find the Bible very nice, now I can read out of my own Bible.

 

(Children of Marowijne 2 with their new schoolbags and Bibles)

Coming up

Month District Number of selected schools
June, 2018 Nickerie 3
July, 2018 Brokopondo 4
Sipaliwini 3