A powerful 7.5 magnitude earthquake rocked parts of South Asia on 26 October 2015. Two schools of the Brothers of Charity in Lahore, Pakistan, were badly damaged. There were some cracks in the classrooms and the boundary walls. For this reason, Fracarita International looked for funds and received an amount from the Province of West-Flanders. The renovation works started on 23 January 2016 and are now finished. The students can go safely to school again.
The two beneficiaries are the Canon Triest Middle School and the Umeed-E-Nau Primary school. Both schools are located in Lahore, Pakistan.
Canon Triest Middle School
The ‘Canon Triest Middle School’ is located at G-Block Youhana Abad. This school is meant to uplift and enhance education among poor communities of Christians. This middle school educates 106 students. The school also starts to offer inclusive education, where out of this total number, there are also 5 students with deafness. The immense poverty and the general lack of literacy motivate families and students to undertake education as a serious approach for a better future.
Umeed-E-Nau Primary School
Umeed-e-Nau is situated in Eisa Nagar, a neighbourhood where adults and children are employed in brick kilns. Poverty and slavery goes hand in hand in this area - people are poor for generations. We have 150 students getting education in this school and there are still more who want to come. Most families have a bonded labour contract, which means that they are obliged to provide labour services to repay loans to their employer for basic necessities, medical expenses, weddings and funerals. It’s a modern form of slavery. Most brick kiln workers can’t read nor write, and don’t know what’s written in their contract. By providing education to the children of the brick kiln workers, the Brothers of Charity help them to improve the position of their families and offer them new perspectives beyond the brick kilns. Besides giving quality education by qualified teaching staffs, all other facilities are also being given to the students, such as books and stationaries.
On 26 October 2015, a powerful 7.5 magnitude earthquake rocked parts of South Asia. It was centred near Jurm in northeast Afghanistan, 250 kilometers from the capital Kabul; and also affecting some part of Pakistan, India, and Tajikistan. As for Pakistan, two days after the disaster, Pakistan National Disaster Management Authority/NDMA confirmed the death toll stands at 280, with more than 1,900 people injured and nearly 14,000 homes damaged. The tremors were strongly felt in Islamabad, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Lahore and other Punjab regions also.
Due to this earthquake, two schools of the Brothers of Charity in Lahore were badly affected and got some cracks in classrooms and boundary walls. For safety reasons, the school management immediately contacted building engineers to have an observational visit. After this survey, engineers gave remarks about the buildings situation: it was urgently in need of renovation.
For this reason, BoC/Fracarita Pakistan wrote a proposal and contacted BoC General Administrative and its NGO Fracarita International. Fracarita International accepted the proposal; and luckily enough got positive response from Provincie West-Vlaanderen/Dienst Externe Relaties-Wereldhuis West-Vlaanderen. The renovation work started on 23 January 2016 and are now finished.