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Diocese of Antsiranana
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Ribbon-cutting at St. Augustine’s
Photo No. : P051211-1
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The new educational center
Photo No. : P051211-2
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Footballs at Ampanefena school
Photo No. : P051211-3
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St. Augustine’s Center Opens in Sambava
December 11, 2005

[Diocese of Antsiranana - Indian Ocean] After the Canterbury Educational Center was opened in Antsiranana in 2005, the St. Augustine’s Educational Center has now been opened in Sambava in the eastern region of the diocese.

The eastern and western regions of the diocese are usually cut off from the outside world for more than six months of the year. The rainy season renders forest paths impassable.

The Mayor of Sambava and the parish priest, the Rev Leonard Argal, inaugurated the new educational community center with Bishop Roger Chung Po Chuen, despite empty shelves and only one computer in sight.

Mr Brian Donaldson, former British ambassador to Madagascar, donated the computer before the embassy was closed down in August 2005.

“I am appealing to generous donors for books and educational resources, mainly in English but also in French and Malagasy,” said Bishop Roger.

St.Augustine’s will also be a stepping stone to literacy programs. Illiteracy is very high in Madagascar. The church will spearhead new ventures in educating less favoured groups of the population.

In the eastern region of the diocese, four new schools have been started in Ampanefena and Antsirabe Nord.

“Even with meagre resources we are engaging in empowerment through kindergarten, primary and secondary education,” said Bishop Roger. “I also make an appeal for help in that field.”

Many of the churches are transformed into schools during weekdays because there are no classrooms.

“The challenges in this field are gigantic,” said Bishop Roger. “Without generous help, little will be achieved even with the best of goodwill. So pray that we will receive help for missionary ventures in education.”