Emmaus Bristol

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Spring 2010

From Bristol to Cameroon

Companion George could be described as “well-travelled”.  Born in Rumania, he has subsequently lived in a number of countries and continents, acquiring a variety of skills ranging from living on the street to being a soldier and working in Security and speaking 7 languages!  But George is a man with a plan. He wants to help others just as he has been helped himself. In true Emmaus spirit!

“I’ve now been at Emmaus Bristol for 10 months.  I am pleased to have been given an opportunity to use my skills and to have space to figure out for myself what I want to do. Liz in the support team has guided me in my search and I am going to Cameroon!!   I’ll be working with Association Sportive de l’Estuaire de Douala as a volunteer to begin with, and I hope I can become a fully-fledged member of staff”.

George then explains what the job is going to be.  “I’ll be living in a house with 25 boys aged from 10 to 17 or 18 and be one of two mentors.  These children come from low income families or were living on the street.  I know what it’s like.  I was there when I was 7…I know I can help them to become a person of their own.  Even if your parents are not around, you can learn to know yourself and open the doors to a good future.  I can help the boys believe in this. I’ll take care of their safety; protect them from exploitation or slavery or any other bad situation.  Sport, education, work, are key players in learning not to be demoralised by one’s own circumstances.  I will do my best in Cameroon because I want to make mine what Abbe Pierre said:  “There is no peace and no fullness of joy except in giving first place to serving first those who are most forgotten and those who suffer most”.

“God gave me the courage to go and do this.  My mother was a strong Christian and instilled these values in me.  She taught me courage and endurance.  I strongly believe in Justice, Equality and Fraternity for all.  I owe a lot to Liz, to the Association Sportive de l’Estuaire de Douala  because they have made it possible for me to use my skills for others for the greater good.”

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