Giving Back to Africa’s Papa Kindomba will visit Grace on September 7

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Dr. Jerry Kindomba is the Project Manager of Giving Back to Africa’s innovative educational program at Centre Salisa in the Mpasa community on the edge of Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He will be coming to Grace Church in Traverse City on Sunday, September 7, to visit the Church School. The children of Grace Church School have been saving their collection money for the past two years to give to Giving Back to Africa, and now they will have the opportunity to learn how gifts like theirs are used.

Dr. Jerry is a public health doctor who has worked for USAID and other non-profit organizations. He and his wife speak English, French, Lingala, Tchiluba, Swahili and several other languages. In Africa, it is respectful to call adults Mama and Papa. Dr. Jerry is traveling in the States with his wife, Mama Angel (“Ah-n-jel”) and the co-founders of Giving Back to Africa, Dr. Ann Marie Thomson and Dr. Jim Calli. Ann Marie is a sister of Linnea Stifler who was a seminarian intern at Grace Church two years ago.

Giving Back to Africa has developed project-based curricula for young adults in this peri-urban slum, lessons designed to help students identify, study, analyze and propose solutions for immediate problems in their community.   These lessons incorporate recognizing assets that already exist in the community, using local research (talking with elders), doing exploratory studies integrated with nationally-required subjects, developing observational and problem-solving skills, and preparing Community Service Actions – going back into the community to share learning. Students at Centre Salisa have worked with such issues as: lack of clean water, solid waste management, and nutrition.  Now, they are launching a long-term sustainability curriculum focused on a Children’s Learning Garden.

Dr. Jerry and Ann Marie will share a documentary short about Giving Back to Africa’s most recent “Fête de Présentation” (Presentation Festival) showcasing student learning from the Nutrition Curriculum. They will share more about the students at Centre Salisa, like Jérémie, Noella, Alain, Titi, and Christ-en-Vie, with time for questions and conversation afterward.

Thank you to the Grace Church School students and staff for your support of Giving Back to Africa. Please be sure to pray for this work, and to learn more about it by going to http:/www.givingbacktoafrica.org.

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