Then the ones who pleased the Lord will ask, "When did we give you something to eat or drink? When did we welcome you as a stranger or give you clothes to wear or visit you while you were sick or in jail?"
The King will answer, "Whenever you did it for any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you did it for me." .......Matthew 25

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Floating school@Boeung Rial in need of repairs

How quickly time has passed. Once we had fretted about whether we could actually get the idea of the floating school (literally) off the ground. Now it's been almost two years since we floated the school at Boeung Rial. During the last big floods last year, the school had morphed temporarily into an ark for some of the struggling frightened families.

We visited Boeung Rial just to get a feel of how things had progressed and whether or not the school had been rightfully been returned to the community as a school.

Our worries were unfounded. Juhan, the man entrusted  with the task of looking after the school had done a marvelous job. The school was back to its original function.There are a fairly constant 25 students who come regularly. Juhan had assured us not to worry, saying that he would die to protect the school. Somehow, I believe him. But he shared that vandals (probably drunks) sometimes try to cause trouble for the school by cutting the anchoring ropes. Also sometimes, the storms are too strong for the scrub branches where the school is tethered to. Each time the school loses its mooring, he has had to re-tow the school back. Sometimes there is not enough help, and the gasoline cost of towing the school has begun to be a financial burden for him.

Now, on top of replacing the frequently vandalized anchoring ropes, it is also apparent that the bamboo and oil drum floats of the school need repairs. This is clearly going to cost.

The task for us now is to raise the money to repair the bamboo and the oil drum floats and to provide Juhan with some financial support to pay for the gasoline needed by the boats to tow the school around.

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