School doesn’t stop for the summer, at least not in Peqin, Albania, where our partner organisation, A2B, and their Children’s Centre team have just finished the Holiday Club which ran for the first time this year in this very deprived and marginalised Roma community. With 60 to 65 children attending, and their parents too, the two-week long Holiday Club proved a great success, so much so that people elsewhere in the town have been asking if they could have one as well, next time.
“Many of the children have never had joy in their lives”, says Alketa Hassani from A2B. “For them it was really like being in heaven!”
In FSCI’s world, individuals matter immensely. The Holiday Club in Peqin brightens up bleak lives and encourages hope, one young life and one loving Mum at a time.
It takes serious teamwork. A2B pulled it all together. The youth group from Pastor Ali’s church in Peqin got stuck in. Young Christian volunteers from Albania and Malta gave it their passionate all.
A combination of fun activities, opportunities to learn and a visit to the sea, which many had never seen before, made this summer a real summer to remember.
But the impact goes deeper still. As Chris Mould, Chief Executive of FSCI, puts it, “if we are going to break the cycle of poverty and help prevent modern slavery, we have to invest in communities as well as individuals. Step by step, A2B, with their wonderful skills, their patience, their love and their consistent involvement in Peqin, are steadily building resilience and the ability for self-help in this particular Roma neighbourhood. As a result, we’ll see more positive social change in this special part of Albania and more inclusion.”