As the light at the end of the tunnel begins to glow a little brighter, we can be thankful to God, that none of our children, staff, or members of Harland Trust have come down with Covid 19.
Like most of the world, everyone has been affected in some way, whether minor or majorly, and the next few months will be interesting as we discover what the new norm will be, both in Fiji and wherever “home” is for you.
School officially reopened on 6 July and some of our children were there on the first day, while others gradually arrived over the next two weeks, and now all but a few, are back at school and into hostel living again. Interestingly, it was the day students who were slow to return. Gloria and her two hearing siblings will not be returning to kindergarten, for fear of catching the virus.
We have a new little boy who will hopefully be able to join us within a few weeks, but there seem to be a few hurdles to clear before he arrives. Please pray for Arnav (around 7) and his family, as they face this new chapter in their lives - it is especially hard for mums to say goodbye for that first time. Arnav has been at a special school in Labasa, with an interpreter some of the time, but he hasn’t made much progress - he knows his alphabet but that is about all. Living in the hostel will be great for him and he will be signing and communicating in a very short time.
Temnik, who is Tony and Tema’s (Hostel Director) son, recently turned six and the theme for his birthday breakfast was red. Fijians love to celebrate and they make a very good job of doing so.
Mrs Babitu has been with us many years and has been a huge asset to the school. She is very strong in math and has been able to “make the penny drop” with some students when no one else has been able to. She has also been our Librarian at times and has a good knowledge of what books we have in the library and where to find them. For a few years now, she has said “This will be my last year”. However, we still have her and we await to see what she does in 2021. Thank you, Mrs Babitu, for your commitment and expertise.
The Fijian government has extended the school year to finish in mid-December rather than 20 November. As the school year normally starts in mid-January, it will be interesting to see the term dates for next year, as that leaves a very short break for the children and staff. The economy of Fiji is suffering at the moment with no tourists, and while we are not government funded, they do give an allowance for each child, and we are praying that they will have the funds to continue with this contribution.
This picture shows some of our teaching staff and children, preparing for our street march to mark the beginning of the Fiji National Disability Games, held in November 2019.
From Left to right back row: Isei (student), teachers Christine, Isi and Ana. Front: Temnik, Tuvou, Walter, Eremasi, and Leba.
Thank you for your interest and support – we will stay in touch.
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