For the third consecutive year, the students of the 11th grade took part in a project called “We are all immigrants”. It all began in the English Class where students started working on solidarity and diversity as the main aspects of building a just and fraternal world, having the language as a connector between different cultures. This year, the project happened on Microsoft Teams, and we counted on Jesuit Brother Paulo Welter, who shared his amazing experience in Africa, and Father Anderson Hammes, Church Parish and Pompeia CIBAI Migration Mission Director.

Brother Welter, who is currently in charge of activities at Vila Oliva, told the students about his experience in Angola and Congo, where he was responsible for the Migrants and Refugees Jesuit Service, one of the works of the Society of Jesus which looks forward to serving, going along and helping migrants, asylum seekers and refugees. Through images and reports of what he experienced, Brother Welter brought a little of the extreme poverty lived in those two countries.

Father Anderson Hammes, who has been representing CIBAI for almost a year, told us about his missions in countries such as Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico and the United States. In his report, he mentioned the importance of the enriching experiences he had on his work with detainees, with children in hospitals and the elderly. He called the attention to the difficult situation migrants have been going through, mainly during the pandemic the world has been living.

Teacher Juliana Castiglia Brundo, mediator of the meeting, feels really sorry about the fact that the students did not have the chance of collecting the donations to CIBAI as in the other years. Father Anderson, then concluded that he hopes the donations could happen at any other time and ended saying that God is good at all times.

The students present at the virtual meeting praised the initiative and the learning provided with this experience. Marcos Kruse Picoli, group 202, said that listening to those stories was really interesting and thanked Brother Welter and Father Anderson for sharing their stories. Elisa Henriques da Motta, group 206, mentioned that having such an opportunity like this was great.

“With the  moto ‘Learning to think’, the project represents the feeling that values, above all, what we are and what we do  and the search of academic and human excellence. And it was because of this feeling that we couldn’t leave such an inspiring project behind, once it allows students to be in touch with people who can share stories they experienced with migrants and refugees”, says teacher Juliana.

*Click here to read the portuguese version.