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Saturday, February 23, 2013

After-School Clinic

The after-school clinic was established shortly after the Monastery offered scholarships for children of the rural community. Once these children started attending school, it quickly became apparent they were significantly behind their classmates, thanks largely to 1) a lack of support back home, and 2) a lack of foundational education. The Brothers responded to this by 1) offering after-school tutoring, and 2) creating Holy Cross School for the younger children of the area.

This clinic used to be mandatory for all 40+ scholarship students, but it has since been scaled back. The Brothers are hopeful this clinic can be phased out entirely -that these “training wheels” of support will have served its purpose and no longer be needed. We are genuinely happy that fewer people are attending.

Here is a glimpse into clinic life last week:

Two girls came needing to research their favorite animal. We took the time to teach them how to look up information on a computer.


Recently, these two girls have only required basic technology-related help, such as printing pictures or copying worksheets. Going back to our ‘training wheels coming off’ theme, we have been quite happy to see them being proficient enough at the rest of their homework.

The next day: An older student, who is quite driven yet struggles with English, came in with an assignment from “Life Orientation” class that required applying for a hypothetical job. I wound up staying until 5pm guiding him on drafting a curriculum vitae (in South Africa, the term “CV” describes both what you might consider a CV and a resume).
Making a Rough Draft

Draft on left, example CV on right, and all-star CV being crafted onscreen.
Both these days were great examples of learning the actual material while simultaneously learning practical skills. Each of these students had to navigate basic computer programs to finish their assignment -a skill not easily practiced for those living in this rural area. For the boy specifically, he had to think critically about his work experience and skills, and how to succinctly summarize it.

Come Tuesday-Thursday afternoons, as we send the Holy Cross students home and wait for the older students to show up, we might see several students one day -the most I’ve had is 5- or we might have nobody (which doesn’t bother us at all :)). The clinic is on the ‘sunset’ of its time of service, but it is nevertheless encouraging to see it still serve a purpose, albeit in a much smaller role than before.

I hope you enjoyed this insight!

Have a blessed day.

1 comment:

  1. I did indeed enjoy this piece of your work. I am glad you shared it, Cameron. It's good to always be extending a hand to help because someone is or will or has extended a hand to you also, I have learned. xo