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No. 42 • January - June 2006 • Page 128
 •  Initiatives

Paris (France) -- Soiree Harambee

On Wednesday May 10, in the Espace du Centenaire Hall in Paris, the first Soirée Harambee was held. Organized by the association Les amis de Josemaría Escrivá, it had as its purpose the collecting of funds to benefit educational and humanitarian projects in Africa. The event, with some 250 people in attendance, was enhanced by an African choral group.

Professor Léon Tshilolo, from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one of the founders of Harambee, presented four of the projects that the African assistance foundation, born on the occasion of the canonization of St. Josemaría, hopes to finance in 2006. These include a professional training center for women refugees from southern Sudan; a formation program for primary school teachers in Kenya; another program in Madagascar, to assist heads of families who want to start their own handicraft enterprises; and, in Dr. Tshilolo’s own country, the construction of three new rural clinics in the area around Monkole hospital, near Kinshasa.

The presentation of the programs was followed by the projection of a video. The organizers hoped to obtain between fifty and a hundred thousand Euros in donations. This may be only a “drop in the bucket,” but as the secretary of the Association pointed out, one must never forget that the great African rivers are made up of many small streams.

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