BY Dan McGinty | November 28 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

Last Gorsilaure appeal as project ends

After 15 years, charity announces that its ongoing commitments could not continue in

The Gorsilaure Project has announced its imminent closure and one last appeal after improving the lives of hundreds of orphans in DR Congo during its lifetime,

Due to illness and the advancing age of the project’s volunteer workers, the charity has regrettably announced that the ongoing commitments could not continue in the current format.

In the 15 years since its foundation, Gorsilaure—which remembers three young boys worst affected by the poverty and lack of infrastructure in their part of the Congo, Gordon, Simon and Laurence —has brought hope and relief to some of the poorest and most vulnerable children in the world.

Now, Dumbarton-based Sr Margaret Rose Scullion, who founded the project after her own harrowing experiences working in the Congo, has retired and is asking for as much money as possible to be raised before the end of the year to help the work of Fr Simon continue in the future, when the support currently drawn from Scotland diminishes.

Working with Fr Simon, the local priest, Gorsilaure Project helped start an orphanage caring for the children, and for many the priest has literally become ‘father’ adopting scores of the children who he has cared for. Today the 10 children from the hundreds who have passed through the orphanage are at university, and many more have become educated and trained thanks to the support provided by the project. With the introduction and development of farming, fish-farming and agriculture being supported by the project, large parts of the orphanage and local community have become self-sufficient, while two cafeterias are also now supported, bringing in much needed locally raised income.

Speaking to supporters when announcing the closure of the project Sr Margaret Rose said: “It is with a very full heart that I say ‘thank you’ to each and all of you for the special part you have played in the Gorsilaure Project.”

Her words were echoed by Fr Simon, who gave his thanks to all his supporters in Scotland.

“We offer our heartfelt thanks to you for the sacrifices you have made for these poor children of the Congo,” he said. “We are certain that the Lord will not let you go unrewarded, for, he says, whoever gives a glass of water to the poor will want for nothing.”

Reflecting on these words, Sr Margaret Rose launched the final appeal of the Gorsilaure Project.

“The prayerful appreciation that Fr Simon and our Gorsilaure orphans extend to you is very sincere,” she said. “Nevertheless, Father’s message also begs the uncomfortable question concerning what will happen to our orphans—and to all the Gorsilaure self-help initiatives—when the regular financial aid they have been receiving comes to an end.

“The obvious solution would be to leave a sizable fund with Father Simon both to keep our orphans alive in the time ahead and to let the hard-working adults continue to plough their way through self-help towards self-sufficiency.

— Cheques should be made payable to THE GORSILAURE PROJECT and sent to Mrs Bridget Mary Scullion, 4 Glebe Gardens, Bonhill, Alexandria G83 9NZ. Contact 01389 753430 for more.



—Read the full version of this story in Nov 28 edition of the SCO in parishes from Friday.



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