Today, 25th of August 2014, we have laid the foundation stone of our project. Here you have the introductory words given by the Brother Director of the Project:
His Excellency Bishop Bejoy D’Cruz,
Father Dominic Sarkar, pastor of Sreemongol Parish,
Mr. Tapan and Brother Robi, representatives of the construction company,
Dear Fathers, Sisters, Brothers, and Friends
In the name of the Marist Brothers I welcome you to the bhikti stapon of our future school and hostels in Gyasnogor. Thank you very much for your presence here today which is very meaningful for us.
First of all I want to give thanks to the persons and institutions that have helped us to reach today’s ceremony:
1. In the first place Bishop Bejoy and the Diocese of Sylhet for finding this beautiful piece of land and giving us official and legal coverage to buy and develop it
2. Thanks to Fr. Dominic Sarkar and the Parish of Sreemongol for the continual support he is giving us whenever we need something
3. Thanks to the Marist Brothers worldwide, especially those in East Asia, Brazil and Spain for helping us to buy the land
4. Thanks to the NGOs and agencies that provided funds to start the construction works: Manos Unidas, Solidarity Education Development, Marist Solidarity Australia, FMSI and Aid to the Church in Need.
Now that we are starting the works is a good occasion for a declaration of intentions: What we are going to build here is a High School and hostels whose targets are the Tea garden workers’ Children, and the tribal communities. Of course, we will open the school to Muslim and Hindu students, but our main objective is to have 50% of our students from the most needed communities.
1. In our understanding a school is not something closed in itself: so, we will continue to support and collaborate in the Sreemongol parish program in the many primary schools scattered in the tea gardens.
2. We will offer our buildings, our personnel and our skills to improve the formation of the teachers at primary and secondary level.
3. And finally, we intend to develop in our school, in the Diocese and in the Church of Bangladesh awareness on the Children’s Rights, setting up a Child Protection Policy and organizing seminars on this topic.
Dear friends, we believe in miracles because so far we have witnessed a certain number of them in the process of developing this project: someone decided to give us a part of his family heritage, a woman gave us a big amount while she was very sick at the hospital thinking of doing something good before dying, others have written books, organized music festivals, and so on… everything for the sake of the tea garden children. We have seen miracles so far, and I am sure God and our Good Mother will continue to help this project. Under their protection we put the starting of the works today.