Sandhurst teachers immerse in Philippines program

Formation in Catholic Social Teaching will be a key focus for fifteen Catholic primary school teachers from Victoria's Sandhurst diocesan who leave this weekend for a 10-day immersion and training program in Cebu with Filipino teachers.

The group (pictured) will head this Sunday to the Philippines' Province of Cebu where they will join twelve other teachers from Catholic Primary Schools in the region.

This opportunity for early career teachers to deepen their understanding of global poverty, injustice and Catholic Social Teaching is being offered by Sandhurst's New Teachers Network and the Catholic Education Office, according to a statement from the Catholic College in Bendigo.

Audrey Brown, one of the group's leaders from the Catholic Education Office, says "immersion is about walking with another community to discover more about oneself.

"The potential for personal and professional growth during this experience is enormous".

A significant part of the teachers' time away will be spent working alongside local Filipinos on a project of service.

They will work as labourers on the low-cost housing project in Talisay City. The housing project, a partnership between the ecumenical charity Habitat for Humanity and the local community, is intended for about 360 families, 180 of them Talisay City residents.

The rest of the beneficiaries include the squatters in Inayawan dumpsite in Cebu City, as well as members of different church organisations and the Cebu newspaper Workers Foundation (Newscoop).

As well as experiencing daily life in a developing country, the trip also aims to offer ongoing support to graduate and early career teachers and to assist them in developing supportive and collegial networks with other teachers in their region.

Photo (L-R) - BACK ROW: Kate Bevan, Ashley Marsh, Leigh Symons, Kane Mayhew, Alexander McKinnon. SECOND ROW: Jacqui Partington, Debbie Olejniczak, Colleen McIntosh, Kerrie Hill. FRONT ROW: Rachel Lechmere, Megan English, Raelene Harding, Maria Weatherill, Audrey Brown. ABSENT: Amy Taylor.

Sandhurst Teachers (Media Release, 14/9/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Habitat for Humanity International
Catholic Education Office, Sandhurst diocese
Catholic College Bendigo
Diocese of Sandhurst

Marists launch Asian mission training program (CathNews 21/7/06)
ACU to help Filipino universities train nurses (CathNews 29/6/06)

15 Sep 2006