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BEKAA VALLEY, LEBANON – What do you notice in this photo? Perhaps you see the temporary housing, cramped quarters, and unaccompanied children. Look at the photo through the eyes of our friends in Lebanon and you might see potential, and a great place for a tent school!
This month, as the so-called Season of Giving winds down, Tent Schools International is ramping up our plans to launch new learning centers in refugee camps like the one shown here.
For each tent school start-up, a total of $20,200 is needed for tent materials, school supplies, rent, heating fuel and three 10-month teacher salaries. Each school will serve 50 children who haven’t been to school in months, or in some cases, years, since fleeing Syria or other conflict zones.
Each school will serve 50 children who haven’t been to school in months, or in some cases, years, since fleeing Syria or other conflict zones.
To the children, these schools are havens of calm and structure in the chaos of camp life. Children traumatized by the deaths of family members and the necessity of leaving their homes are influenced and mentored by Christian teachers who represent hope for a life after the camps.
One day, the news will shift to other urgent stories, and the refugee crisis will fade from daily discourse. Even as this happens, the need for compassionate learning centers within the camps will remain – either a child’s desire to learn will grow with the presence of a tent school, or that hope will be replaced by despair with the realization that life ends at the refugee camp gate.
Will you join us? Your contribution this month will help begin a new tent school for 50 students by March of 2016, Lord willing. This open opportunity to demonstrate the compassion of Jesus through tent schools could not have been imagined before the refugee crisis began. We invite you to walk through this opening with us while the chance to impact refugee children remains.
Our hope and prayer this Advent season is that you and yours have a blessed Christmas as you celebrate the gift of Jesus – the One who came to save, to bring hope to our weary souls, and to show us the Kingdom of God.