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Carondelet’s Lenten Project Focuses on Refugee Crisis

Apr 02, 2016 04:25PM ● By Jennifer Neys

During the Lenten season, students at Carondelet High School learned more about the plight of refugees around the world and how teenagers can make a difference for refugee families. Led by the school’s Spiritual Life Council (SLC), a student group that plans spiritual activities for the campus community, Carondelet students chose to focus on the refugee crisis during Lent because they knew about it from the news but wanted to understand it more fully. 

“This is a relevant issue politically and in our faith community, and many of the refugees who are fleeing their homes are people of faith,” said Eva Bergman, a junior and SLC member. “We decided to use this Lenten season to build greater empathy on campus toward refugees, to learn to see beyond the stereotypes and realize that they are often families just like our own.” 

During Carondelet’s celebration of Sisterhood Week that began on March 14, the students talked about the difficulties and dangers facing those who have to flee their countries with small children. The school community collected baby carriers to donate to Carry the Future, a California-based non-profit that provides baby carriers and relief packs to refugees to assist them on their long journeys ( The students also collected money for Catholic Charities of the East Bay’s refugee programs.

In addition, a number of Carondelet faculty members incorporated discussions of the refugee crisis into their English, social studies, math and religion classes. Sophomore and SLC member Makenzie Miller noted that it felt important to take on this global issue as a high school community. “A lot of what we hear about the refugee crisis is from adults, including our parents and the news, but it is far more powerful to have these conversations with other teenagers. It is great to look at the issue from the teen point of view and consider what we ourselves can do to help.”