St Alban’s hatches Big Dig Easter garden project

st albans resize 3Schoolchildren have pulled out all the ‘stops’ to inspire their city to dig deep for the world’s poorest people.

St Alban’s Catholic Primary School pupils have been working hard to transform a plot beside the busy bus stop on Lensfield Road.

As well as revealing the Easter story to the captive audience, they are raising awareness of our CAFOD Dig Deep appeal for Lent.

Global hunger

The campaign highlights the scandal of global hunger that one in eight people around the world do not have enough food to eat – not because there is not enough food but because it isn’t shared out.

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The garden, which includes a seven foot cross, depicts the journey Jesus took carrying his cross and the tomb his body was laid to rest in and later missing from.

All the action was hidden behind a willow screen but we were there to see the children’s hard work unveiled on April 2 – along with people waiting at the bus stop!

Headteacher Joseph McCrossan said: “When we heard CAFOD’s appeal for Lent this year was to Dig Deep and schools were being asked to take part in the Big Dig – it was the catalyst for a gardening project on a large scale.

“We felt we wanted to do something that raised awareness of CAFOD and told the public about the Easter story.”

Using materials that pupils chose from Cambridge’s Scotsdale Garden Centre, each class was given a different part of the project to complete.

Year six students have made posters explaining all aspects of Easter.

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Deeper understanding

Mr McCrossan said: “The children are learning a deeper understanding of Easter and poverty around the world from doing this, using CAFOD resources for schools.”

CAFOD’s diocesan manager Stephen Matthews said: “The children’s public art, setting the scene for Jesus’ last steps, is a creative way to use their garden and a marvellous way to support CAFOD’s Dig Deep appeal to help poor farmers around the world. We are very grateful for the continued efforts and their unswerving support in helping us to help poor communities lift themselves out of poverty.”

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What the pupils thought…
Year six pupil Pravinda, 11, said he felt he had learnt a lot from the experience. He said: “I have learnt more about CAFOD and learnt more about the Bible.”

Indiana aged 10, who is in year five, said: “My class made the cross and half the class were given words which Jesus felt and the other half were given words for how we feel about Easter. We thought about them and burnt the words on the cross.”

Year six pupil Isobel said she worked on posters to explain it all to people. She said: “I think I have learnt a lot from this. I really enjoyed it.”

The rock covering the tomb was rolled back at Easter.

People queuing for the bus and passers by can see how CAFOD’s Lenten appeal, highlighting global hunger and the prospect of food is shaped by the Easter story.

st albans resize 1Decoding the symbols and revealing the deeper meaning.

• Reception class bought the bird bath. This represents purity in water and the women who weeped for Jesus.
• Year one went and bought the flowers for the gardening.
• Year two made the cloth to go over the cross. Decorated in hearts and doves it represens peace, love and hope.
• Year three decorated the paving stones with footprints – representing the journey to Calgary and the footprint of faith.
• Year four made the rock or boulder. It is wood sprayed and has special words depicting strength, power and the resurrection.
• Year five helped with the seven-foot cross. It has images and words to show what the cross stands for and how Jesus felt.
• Year six made posters explaining all aspects of Easter.

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