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Edmund Rice was moved by the presence of Christ, open and appealing to him in the poor. His first initiatives in ministry were addressed to poor and ignorant street children of Waterford who were lacking in basic Christian education. The early Brothers continued this focus into the following centuries.
At the same time Edmund's compassion reached out to the whole person and hence he set up a bake house and tailor shop to provide for deprived young boys, he conducted evening religion classes for young men, he established lending libraries, he cared for prisoners, the sick, widows and orphans and he encouraged his Brothers to do likewise. Edmund himself saw ignorance as the main cause of oppression of Irish youth and believed that education was the pathway out of that ignorance and oppression.
Over the two centuries of existence, the Brothers' ministry in various parts of the world has focused very strongly on education - responding to the need of the times, liberating young people through education, with an emphasis on Christian education. The promotion of social justice and care of the earth are essential dimensions of our contemporary understanding of the Edmund Rice spiritual heritage and philosophy. Our ministry outreach today, informed by understanding the structural causes of poverty, global inequities, lack of access to education and environmental degradation assist us in discerning and constructing appropriate responses to social and ecological injustice.
The Ruben Centre, NAIROBI, KENYA
The Ruben Centre provides key community development programmes to one of the largest slums in Nairobi.
Vision: To be a faith-based centre striving for an empowered and just Mukuru community.
Mission: To offer quality education, health, financial and social services to children and families in Mukuru community.
Centro Hermano Manolo, COCHABAMBA, BOLIVIA
El Centro Hermano Manolo (CEHM) es una organización sin fines de lucro, dependiente de la Congregación de Hermanos Cristianos. Acompañamos a chicos menores de 18 años, trabajadores (lustrabotas, carretilleros, vendedores ambulantes) del sector La Cancha.
Misión: El CEHM es una institución que procura que la población de menores, trabajadores de La Cancha, gocen de su niñez rodeada de gente compasiva y liberadora.
Visión: Crear un ambiente comunitario donde los niños y adolescentes trabajadores, menores de dieciocho años, puedan vivir sus derechos y valores.
Edmund Rice Ministry, KABANKALAN & MAASIN, THE PHILIPPINES
The Christian Brothers are working in the small cities of Kabankalan on the island of Negros and Hilongos on the island of Leyte. Their ministries range from working to build the capacity of principals and teachers in Catholic schools to providing special programmes for young people at risk.
Some information is available on the following websites
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Education For Life, ELDORET, KENYA
Eldoret, the fifth largest and fastest growing area in Kenya, is located 263km North West of Nairobi with a population of close to 220,000. Regular EFL workshops are conducted which focus on prevention. Counseling services are available and in-home support is provided. Close to 500 orphans and vulnerable children (whose parents are infected) are being supported to enable them to continue in primary and secondary school. Infected / affected families are assisted to initiate income generating activities and are encouraged to become involved in the Savings and Internal Lending Communities (SILC) scheme.
Comunidade Edmund Rice, RAILACO, TIMOR LESTE
Communidade Edmund Rice (CER) runs a wide range of projects covering health, education, infrastructure and community development encompassing five villages in the mountainous area southeast of Dili in Timor Leste. The CER programme currently consists of Brothers Peter Coe and Frank Hennessy, who are responsible for coordinating the program of work for both the early childhood learning project and the solar lighting project within this region.
STAR Support Group, YAMBIO, SOUTH SUDAN
Our mission is to educate, support and advocate on behalf of all people living with HIV in Yambio, as part of a society-wide response that seeks an end to the HIV epidemic.
The STAR group is working with a group is PLWHA (People Living With HIV / AIDS) who are also the poorest of the people in Yambio both economically and socially. This is in a context of South Sudan which is amongst the poorest in the world.
The STAR project is based in Yambio, Southern Sudan, a place in conflict for over twenty years. The Christian Brothers have been present in South Sudan for the last ten years working closely with the STAR project, which began in 2005.