Community Building in the Solomons

2016 04 7 001Maoro Christian Community Schools, on the island of Malaita have about six hundred students across the two schools. Senior students can walk up to 12 kilometres a day to attend school. God has sent us there not to convert people, like our own school communities the majority are Christians. Our objective is to build relationships and support in practical ways, reflecting Jesus’s example. Consequently, these people do the same in return as their faith is often based on the supernatural power of God and the strength of their obedience to Him. It’s directly related to the simplicity of their lifestyles.
Education is seen as vital to improving their living conditions. During our latest trip we introduced the fundamentals of Christian education and how this looks different. The principals and staff of both schools developed a pact to work closer together and share resources. This contrasts to the isolation between schools that was observed during the first two trips. We also introduced a Learn to Read program, giving them confidence in teaching reading skills.
The challenge for us is to walk humbly with these people. “One of the greatest “sins” of international development and humanitarian work is paternalism. It comes with an attitude that “we from the West are better than the Rest. The attitude is not always blatant; in fact, it’s often very subtle. However, when we think more highly of our means and of ourselves, we hinder our ability to learn from others.” Institute for Faith, Work & Economics
These trips have allowed us to build community. It has been a ripple effect, our school community is now connected with their school community, students write letters back and forth, we raise funds, collect resources but with a heart to the individuals. God has worked through us to give Hope to these people about a different future, let them know that God values them and has sent us to help them.

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2016 04 8 001