Lenten Almsgiving Project

Dear Family,

In unity with the Church, this Lent we invite your entire family to join our Sisters and the entire school community in solidarity with the most poor and vulnerable in Ayaviri, Peru in a Lenten Almsgiving Project. This project is a beautiful opportunity for children to learn about the needs of others, and to grow in compassion and generosity. It is very important to begin to foster stewardship in the hearts of the little ones. Let me share a little bit about Ayaviri!

Ayaviri is a mountainous region with an altitude so high and air so thin that big potato chip bags pop there! Because of the harsh climate, Ayaviri has poor agricultural resources and few employment opportunities. Parents are forced to look for work elsewhere, often leaving the children and elderly home alone. These conditions have led to an environment of extreme poverty, which has been exacerbated by the pandemic.

Ten years ago, seeing a need, the Servants of the Plan of God opened an after-school program called “Biblioteca” for children as young as six year old, who have no one to look after and oversee their homework. In this program, children learn, play, and are accompanied in their education and spiritual journeys. Now, to continue serving the children during the pandemic, the Sisters are renovating the “Biblioteca” with technology so children (who don’t have access to internet, electronic devices, and electricity) are able to log on to classes.

So, how does this project work?

We have sent each student from preschool to 8th grade home with a small “Almsgiving Box” to fill with offerings. We are challenging each of the children to do acts of service at home to earn extra change to give to these children. We are praying that every child is able to give $10.00. These donations will be used to implement the above technology renovation project. I have attached a calendar the Sisters created with fun ideas on how to live out this project as a family through praying, fasting, and almsgiving. Your family may return this “Almsgiving box” to their classroom teacher or to the school office by March 31. Every, single, cent will be donated to this project the Sisters hold so dear to their hearts. We would like the students to feel some ownership, sacrifice, and solidarity through their donations, but if you would like to contribute more, you are encouraged to do so here.

Please take a moment to view the brief video Lenten Video. We shared it with the students today and they will be coming home with the boxes in their backpacks. If they have not decorated them in class, we encourage you to decorate them at home together!

We are so blessed to be here in person and these children have missed out on almost a full year of school. It would be wonderful to support them.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Dr. Shewbridge