The Young Girls Home at Berberati
A short story:
The Home was founded in 1999. Monsignor Agostino, who at that time was the Berberati’s bishop, asked the Sisters of Charity to create the Home, following a reflection about the living conditions of young girls of school age who live with their guardians. These young girls come from different sectors and regions of the dioceses in order to continue their studies at the private High School, and at the Technical School "Nemesia". They are in need of some support and of a specific lifestyle, to help them to become aware of their own role and place in the development of their country. The Sisters of Charity replied favourably to the call of the bishop.
The mission of the Young Girls Home is as follows: welcoming, supporting, orienting and educating young Central African women, in order them to become responsible, dignified persons, able to promote well-being within their own home, their family, in church, in the society, in their country.
To be accepted, young girls have to send a personal and hand-written request. The Home receives girls with different school levels, from third grade of elementary school to final year. They attend the classes of the private schools of the city and in addition, an afternoon tutoring is organised for them at the Home. The girls also receive Christian education: sharing the Word of God, recollection, prayers, visiting the sick and the jailed. Human formation takes place through the daily tasks and through some classes. The girls take turns to cook, clean, work in the fields, sew, etc.
For the current year, almost the totality of the 20 young girls have obtained the average marks requested to move into a higher grade, in spite of the current socio-political situation of the Central African Republic.
At home, they made some efforts for participating in the housekeeping tasks and for their own behaviour in a social group.
The Ste Jeanne-Antide Home has become the reference Home for Berbarati’s Dioceses.
It isn’t always easy to cope with the realities of life in group, especially because of ethnical differences, that often create divisions. Pygmies, for example, experience some difficulties to adapt to a life in group based on a number of rules, a challenge for them. Expenses linked to healthcare, and to maintaining the property and the buildings do really exceed what parents can pay. And, unfortunately too, some girls have been unable to make use of the means available to them to study properly and to develop themselves in order to become responsible women.
To conclude my presentation, I would like to thank heartedly my Congregation for having welcomed these girls in our Home and for having formed and educated them during their studies. I am very grateful too, for the experience I lived, accompanying these girls. Sister Jolly Blanche