Two lasting bequests from parents to children are roots and wings, according to clergyman Henry Ward Beecher.
That thought has resonated with Bob and Janice Newell, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel in Greece, as they work with Albanian immigrants in Athens, hoping to be the presence of Christ in their lives.
The Newells return to EthicsDaily.com’s Skype platform with a new interview about the PEP program at PORTA (the name of their immigrants’ center in Athens).
While other aspects of PORTA’s work focus on making sure Albanian children in Athens don’t lose their “roots,” the PEP program, says Bob Newell, is really designed to provide wings.
The educational system in Greece is lacking, especially for immigrant children, says Janice Newell. When parents are immigrants as well, they are limited – by language, by work schedules – in how they can assist their children. That’s where PEP steps in.
Frontesteria is a tutoring or enrichment program in Greece, says Bob Newell. Albanians can’t afford that sort of private educational support so PEP is a version of frontesteria.
An Albanian university student group has even stepped in to help PORTA tutor Albanian kids in math and spelling.
Bob says the PEP program has driven home the importance of family.
“That family unit, for better or worse, is a critical element here,” says Bob Newell. The program has reminded them that they must care not just for the whole person, but the whole family as well.
Watch the interview with the Newells at vimeo.com/ethicsdaily/skype-bobandjanicenewell
Watch a previous interview with the Newells at vimeo.com/ethicsdaily/skype-newells1
Visit Bob Newell’s blog at ItsGreek2u.blogspot.com
Watch other EthicsDaily.com Skype interviews at vimeo.com/ethicsdaily