May 5, 2015

Ministry Update

Blog Archives:

We would like to extend our gratitude to you for your generous support of EduDeo Ministries.

We are experiencing God's incredible blessings on our ministry as we see His hand at work in Nicaragua, Belize, the Dominican Republic, Zambia, South Sudan — and beyond!

Our hope is to bring Gospel change through quality education rooted in a Biblical worldview to our partner schools worldwide. This is where transformation begins!

Now that we are halfway through our fiscal year, we would like to share with you some updates on what is currently happening at EduDeo Ministries.

BELIZE - Partnering with PCSB (Presbyterian church schools of Belize)

  • 2 HANDS teams have served in Belize working on 2 different projects. One team helped to bring the flooring up to code at Concepcion Presbyterian School by laying tiles on the floor. The 2nd team built a security wall at Unity Presbyterian School and on the 3rd story roof of another school so that they could use it for a play area during the rainy season and for band practice.
  • EduDeo has helped 97 students to attend Presbyterian Day School.
  • EduDeo is supporting the review and revisions to the partners governing documents, a slow and tedious process, but essential to healthy growing school associations.
  • Walking Together volunteer Bill De Jager led 43 principals and teachers in a 1-week professional development workshop to equip school leaders and possible future leaders with a Christian perspective, as well as the tools for understanding school governance and practicing healthy leadership styles.

NICARAGUA - Partnering with Nehemiah Center & ACECEN (Association of Christian Schools in Nicaragua)

  • 4 HANDS teams have served and 3 HANDS teams are still remaining. So far teams have replaced the roofing and all the electrical work in one school, built a library, added 2 classrooms onto another school and are in the process of building a computer lab for a 4th school.
  • EduDeo, in partnership with The Gideons International Canada, has been able to ship 24,000 Bibles which will be placed in 92 Nicaraguan Christian schools over the next 6 months.
  • An association of Christian Computer Science teachers were trained and a pilot project of 30 Raspberry Pi computers are being experimented with as a cheaper, but more appropriate technology for teaching computers in Nicaragua.
  • In partnership with the Association of Nicaragua Christian Academy (ANCA), EduDeo’s partner was able to bring 80 Christian school principals together for an educational conference. It was a huge motivation and learning opportunity.
  • EduDeo funded ACECEN facilitators to conduct 91 trainings which had 915 teachers learning so far this fiscal year. Topics included:
    -  Biblically-based Thematic Statements;
    -  Leadership of service;
    -  Literacy strategies;
    -  Parent education;
    -  Integration of Biblical Worldview in the subjects of Social Science, and Language and Literature.
  • Walking Together Learning Leaders Robert Koole & Tena Siebenga-Valstar visited Nicaragua in November to engage in professional development sessions with ACECEN facilitators, focused on pilot project materials in Language Arts and Social Studies. They also visited schools to see and hear about the impact of Biblical worldview on teaching and learning.
  • EduDeo tried to get 4 Nicaraguans to come to Canada to learn and share within the Canadian context but the Canadian Embassy regrettably rejected all their visa applications.
  • 2 School2School relationships continue to grow between Canadian and Nicaraguan schools.
  • 5 Ontario Christian school teachers participated in the Discover & Learn trip. They travelled to Nicaragua in late July to learn about the advances of Christian education in Nicaragua and to interact with, learn from and encourage Nicaraguan Christian teachers. Another trip is being organized for the summer of 2015.

Dominican Republic - Partnering with COCREF (Colegios Christianos Reformados)

  • HANDS has sent 2 teams to serve in the DR and another 3 will be going and returning before the end of April. All teams will be working on one school project at Renacer Christian School, which will expand a growing school by 5 rooms – one which is planned to be a computer lab.
  • Tim Bootsma, EduDeo’s International Partnership Director, participated in a strategic planning event conducted by COCREF to develop and implement a plan for their future.
  • Walking Together volunteer Diane Stronks led teacher training sessions about integrating a Biblical worldview through project-based learning. The 25 participants worked in teams to develop engaging and practical projects that can be readily used in the life and development of COCREF schools. The five projects covered a wide range of topics; including school culture, food and nutrition, and developing codes of conduct.
  • So far this year COCREF leadership was able to do conduct 19 different training sessions with 185 educators in attendance. Some of the training topics covered include:
    -  Biblical integration into the curriculum and classroom;
    -  Classroom management;
    -  Project-based Learning.

Zambia - Partnering with CCAP (Church of Central Africa Presbyterian)

  • 2 HANDS teams have served at 1 large building project at the Hoya Secondary School campus. The teams helped to build 4 classrooms, a large staff room, and 4 school offices, which will become the centre of this new high school campus. The high school has currently started in a nearby primary school.
  • Through a grant from EduDeo, CCAP was able to improve their operational communication by purchasing computers, cameras, and setting up their office with the internet.
  • Mwase Day Secondary School, a project EduDeo funded, is now being used.
  • August 2014 marked the beginning of Mbeu Deo (Seed for God), a 3-course sequence of 2-weeks – each offered over 3 consecutive years for CCAP teacher education students. The 3 courses lead to a certificate of achievement that will help the student teachers understand the underlying principles of Christian education even as they complete the Zambia teacher education requirements. When they graduate the students will be fully qualified according to the Ministry of Education standards and also be well-qualified with Teaching for Transformation for CCAP schools.
  • Walking Together volunteers Elco Vandergrift and Dora Stroobosscher led 'Teaching for Transformation' and Biblical worldview training with 35 educational leaders and teachers in January 2015.
  • Marc and Dora Stroobosscher volunteered for 4 weeks during January and February with the CCAP Education Department. They worked with 35 CCAP Early Adopter teacher-leaders to review their implementation of Teaching for Transformation curriculum development.

Partnering with South Sudan

  • Despite the current troubles in South Sudan, work has continued but at a much more cautious pace.
  • Walking Together volunteers Ike Witteveen and Jake & Minka Vriend led National Teacher Trainers (NTT) in the final course of their training with a 2-week intensive course in September and October in Ethiopia. A second series of courses originally scheduled for January will be rescheduled starting in May. The NTT will be taking the leadership on conducting these workshops for teachers.
  • Where the Biblical worldview material has been shared in the public schools, they are noticing a remarkable difference both in the teachers and in student behaviour. One of the repeated comments we hear is that there are now fewer student fights in the playground.
  • Plans to expand and equip a guest house and training center in South Sudan have been rescheduled for September 2015.

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