Generous Ballymacash pupils send Romanian
children to summer camp
The pupils of Ballymacash Primary
School and Nursery Unit raised £1,500 to send 60
Romanian orphans to camp this summer. Pictured along
with P5 teacher Mrs Coles, who will be leaving the
school for two years, is Mr Wes Gilmore, the school
principal and pupils Courtney Griffin, Jamie Magowan,
Mark McGuigan, Reece Nicholson, Chantelle Thompson
and Jemma Snoddy. US19-745SP
THE generosity of Ballymacash Primary School
pupils will be sending 60 Romanian orphans to camp this summer.
Primary five Teacher Mrs Fiona Coles is set
to exchange life in Lisburn for Romania for the next two years
and shortly before Christmas she set the School and Nursery Unit
pupils the 'Ballymacash Bus Challenge' to help the children in
The challenge saw every child take home a bus
moneybox to collect as much change as possible to send the
children in Romania to summer camp.
At a cost of £25 per child, it was thought 20
children would be a good target, howeyer the pupils raised a
whopping £1,500, enough to send 60 children to camp this summer.
For the last four years Mrs Coles and her
husband Paul, a youth worker, have been leading teams of young
people to Romania to run summer camps with Livada Orphan Care.
These trips have proved life changing for the members of their
teams and indeed for them. Fiona and Paul found themselves with
a greater love for Romania each time they returned. So as of
this July, Fiona and Paul will be moving to Targu Mures, Romania
to work full time for two years with Livada Orphan Care.
Twins abandoned at the baby
and Cristi at last summer's camp. US19742SP
One of their key roles will be as Camp
Directors. Each week of the summer they will provide up to
sixty, 4-18 year old orphans with an action packed week of fun,
sports, crafts, adventure activities and care they would not get
at their state orphanage.
Their aim is to show them that God loves
them, that they are special and to give them happy memories that
They will also be setting up a youth
programme to connect with a forgotten generation of older
orphans. These teenagers were the neglected and abused babies
seen on television almost 16 years ago when the horror of
Romanian orphanages first hit Western Europe.
Sadly once these teenagers reach school
leaving age they are no longer the responsibility of the state,
so many as young as 16 will be left to fend for themselves, with
no life skills this often leads them to a life on the streets
and a dismal future.
Ballymacash Primary has played a huge part in
supporting the couple on this new venture and during their two
year placement it is hoped to continue the link with further
fundraising challenges and monthly updates. School principal Mr
Wes Gilmore said, "Mrs Coles is still with us and already the
children have gained so much from the Romanian link. As well as
the obvious financial support, we hope to broaden the children's
horizons to the needs to others less fortunate around the world.
Knowing the generosity of our pupils and parents the total does
not surprise me and I hope during the two years we will be able
to organise further fundraising events to help with the Livada
Anyone interested in finding out more about
the project and ways to support it, should contact the
Ballymacash Primary School secretary on 9266 4244