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I do believe…you’ve got more material wealth to share, so that material wealth should be distributed in such a way that those who need it more can benefit. But the focus is not in the wealth. Or in the financial aspect. It is in the sharing.”
Sister Len

Film clip - Economic stewardship

Watch the following clip and discuss:



It's not always about having to have your own personal experience. We know through the church that we have a duty to give.
Kath

Discuss:

  • How did what Kath and Sister Len's comments about fundraising connect to what you already knew or thought?
  • What challenged you about the discussion on the cost of a student immersion program and the impact that same amount of money could have in a community? How does this relate to your stated aims?
  • Consider whether the time and effort spent raising money for the immersion trip is an isolated effort. How is it integrated into an ongoing commitment and understanding of charitable giving throughout the year? The same vigour displayed in the lead up to an immersion trip should apply to the ongoing effort to be generous throughout the year. 
  • "It's not always about having to have your own personal experience to feel good that you have given to us." Discuss this with your group- do you agree or disagree? Why? Is that an alternative way to achieve the education aims of your immersion trip?
  • How is your service learning or mission program linking local action to global issues? 
  • Sister Len mentions the carbon footprint of travel. Have you considered the carbon footprint of international travel? 
  • If you are travelling, how will you offset the impact? The environmental aspect of immersions is further explored on the 'Just Visiting?- Stewardship of Creation page.'




Film clip - Fundraising logistics you may not have considered


Watch the following clip and discuss:



You spend a whole lot of time. Usually there is a whole gamut of donors and visitors who want to come.
Sister Len

Discuss:

  • What aspects of Sr Len and Kath's comments challenged you?
  • Was there anything raised that you hadn't considered before? 
  • How do you feel about funding administrative or logistical aspects that make student immersions possible?
  • Have you considered all the logistical challenges of taking a group of students, and the burdens these may create for local communities?
  • Have you considered taking fewer students as Sister Len suggested?
  • Can you ensure that the student immersion has less negative impact and more positive impact?




 

Film Clip - Focus on relationship, not fundraising


Watch the following clip and discuss:



There is always a discussion. To just follow their thinking is not progress. To just follow your thinking is not progress.
Sister Len

Discuss:

  • What aspects of Sr Len's discussion challenged you?
  • How are you placing more emphasis on the relationship between your school and the host community?
  • What kind of fundraising is/will be associated with your student immersion program?
  • How was this fundraising component developed? Who decided what was needed and how this need was best met? Is fundraising the most sustainable way to meet this need?
  • Have there been times when needs have been presumed? How do you know you are the best group to meet those needs? Have you considered the broader context of those needs? Might you be displacing workers or disrupting local economies by meeting needs in kind?
  • How has your relationship with the host community facilitated progress?


I inherited the fundraising component of our immersion. After a few trips of fundraising and handing over a cheque on our arrival, I suddenly realised that I did not know why we raised the money. I had never had a conversation with the staff there or even asked if they needed money from us at all. Each year I now I have discussions with the community and it is guided by our relationship and sometimes, a monetary donation is not the required contribution. Fundraising needs to be undertaken in the spirit of partnership and be guided by the needs and requests of the partnering community."
Darcie,
Immersion Coordinator at Avila College


Discuss:

Discuss the following quote from Sister Len:
How does it challenge you? How is it connected to what you know? What questions do you have?

"I do believe  that the wealth of the world should be shared equally. Not equally. There should be equity. I do believe…you’ve got more material wealth to share, so that material wealth should be distributed in such a way that those who need it more can benefit. 
But the focus is not in the wealth. Or in the financial aspect.It is in the sharing. The focus is in the sharing. I’m sharing this, I’m sharing my time, or my 50 cents with you…not because it will make me feel good, that I’ve done my bit…I’ve done my Christian duty…but because I do believe, that everyone in this world has the right to full life. That my 50 cents helps me…not them…achieve a better world. Helps me contribute to making the world we live in- mine as well as yours- a  better place. There will hopefully be less conflict, a bit more peace and harmony amongst us. 
That 50 cents may mean that this kid has a day of school. And I rejoice in that. But I don’t expect them to say [bow down] ‘thank you thank you very much, you’ve made my life a day longer. It’s my own application I think, it’s my own duty as a human being, as a Christian, to do that part.  In a way, it’s like, thank you for the opportunity- that you’re helping me fulfill my being as a human. " Sister Len