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From Youths at Risks to Youths of Promise

May 09, 2018
SCHOOL VISIT NUMBER 2: BRANCO WEISS

Learning theories is one thing but seeing it put into practice is another. 

Like excited little children anticipating our next gift, we journeyed with great expectancy to a place we knew not to see what we learned put into practice. 

Our guide was quite handsome and spoke intellectually. He described our journey to our gift and enlightened us about what we were about to receive.

Our eyes beheld the beautiful rocky deserts in MaaleAdumin where Bedouins sometimes perched themselves for just a little bit; and luscious green trees watered by drip irrigated pipeline stood tall. The views were simply magnificent.But that was not our gift. 

Alas we arrived and received our gift – Branco Weiss – a place of hope for those deemed hopeless by their circumstances. The inviting aroma that filled that environment was simply amazing. Jovial Principal, Vice Principal, counselors, teachers, Police Officer and students alike, made us all feel so welcomed we wished not to part.

The infrastructure was clean and the classes we visited bubbled with excitement. Work in the Industrial Design Class was remarkably done by students guided by their hardworking teacher; and the great musical performances by students, well; words can’t begin to express the love we all felt for this room – singing, dancing and instrument playing all added to the enthusiasm in this area. 


1.Some very excited students and participants
2.The singers and 2 of our group member
3.Participants, Course Coordinator and School’s Mngt Team

Loved by all, was the idea that students were given FREE breakfast and lunch and were given all the necessary tools to function throughout the day – all they had to do was show up and be on time. Additionally, the holistic aspect of each student was catered for as portions of the staff took time to not only perform their duties during working hours but 24/7 searching the streets at nights in search of students who may have relapsed.

This school was really one with great features to emulate. If only we had more time we wouldn’t mind spending it with these amazing people. Without a doubt, we all walked away taking something new and visualizing how best we can fit this model into our own systems at home.

Professional Visit and Workshop at Susan’s House: Employment and Youth at Risk

After being given the theory on ‘Employment as Rehabilitation’ we journeyed to Susan’s House to see this being put into practice. Susan is the late wife of the founder of the house (Susan’s House) who passed away seventeen years ago. Her dream was to work with youths at risk in order to give them hope and to prepare them for life. To fulfill this noble vision of hers, her husband together with his friend established a workshop that works with youth at risk and named it after her. 

The visit to Susan’s House was one which left us stunned at the wonderful creations which youths can produce when they truly put their minds to it. These at risk youths channel their energies into positive work and manufacture valuable goods made from glass and ceramic along with other materials. They are positively engaged while making money and keeping them off the streets. The house is transforming the life of many youths at risk by giving them the opportunity, love, motivation, support and care, which they may have once lacked. For us the youth we met at Susan’s House are no longer youth at risk but youth of hope and promise thanks to the proprietor and staff. Some of us were mesmerized by items made by these youths of hope and promise so to show our love and support we bought several items while engaging with them. 


1.Experiencing the job firsthand
2.Group Members and Susan House Manager
3.Course Participant with Manager

The manager enlightened us with information on how the organization is run and how students are chosen. Programs like these are relevant in today’s society to creating positive outcomes for our youths of hope.

GROUP MEMBERS:
   Omar Keita (Gambia)
   Trang Ho Huyen (Vietnam)
   BhupendraDhital (Nepal)
   Nicole Warde-Morris (St. Kitts)