In June 2018, Old Bawn Community School with Habitat for Humanity, will bring a group of student and teacher volunteers to Romania to help build homes for families in need. This will be our third trip there following on from our 2014 and 2016 builds. We are very excited about this and our working hard towards reaching our fundraising goals. To date we have done numerous bag packs, a Racenight, a Darts Night with former World Champion Eric Bristrow and even face painting outside Croke Park on All Ireland Hurling Final Day to help raise funds. These ventures are being made possible because of the fantastic work of the students and brilliant support from Staff, Parents and the wider Old Bawn Community. The value of being involved in this initiative is immense to our students and it creates a lasting impact with the families they meet and work alongside with; our students help them achieve their dream of finally owning their own home.
Our Habitat for Humanity Experience in Romania
by two Old Bawn Student Volunteers
We would like to share some of our best Habitat moments with all of you.
One of our most memorable moments whilst in Romania was getting to know all the families that would be living in the houses we were building. They were on site working with us every day and were extremely welcoming and friendly.
Everyone worked equally hard on all four apartments and when they are complete all the keys are put into a hard had and picked out at random. This is a really great way to get everyone involved in working on all the builds and it creates a real sense of community among the families who will one day become neighbours.
Their gratitude and hard work showed us the difference all our effort was making. We were introduced to Romanian culture, food, music, and language whilst there.
We painted, dry walled, plastered, sanded, made foundations and also walls to separate the rooms. We shovelled, swept, cleaned, carried extremely heavy buckets of plaster and many other tasks that made us very sweaty in the heat.
However in between these jobs we sang songs, danced, had water fights with the builders and had a laugh with each other, the volunteers and the families. Seeing how positive and happy these people were with how little they had, made us appreciate what we take for granted here at home. We made great friends from home and abroad who we are still in contact with.
Ciaran and I are both hoping to take part in another Habitat project in the near future as it was such an incredible experience that we will not forget.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the teachers who put up with us for a week and who made sure we didn’t go missing or get sunburned. Lastly, we would like to thank all of the parents who helped us with this two year process and allowed us to take part in this fantastic project; it was definitely worth it.
Kirsty Gadd and Ciaran Murphy