A Cancelled Project but a Fresh Start with Online Teacher Training


Great plans were made for the CNT Team to return to the West Bank in March to provide training for teachers in conjunction with the first LPJ Education Conference in Ramallah. Flights and accommodation were booked and timetables were organised. However, on March 10, the Palestinian Health Authority ordered the cancellation of all conferences and workshops because of the threat of Coronavirus. The CNT team was fortunate in being able to cancel all their arrangements with the only cost being part of the airfares.

The pandemic of COVID-19 halted this training – but not entirely. CNT embarked on a new strategy of training LPJ teachers online.

Training in Palestine, 2019 - Catch the ball answer a question

Training in Palestine, 2019 – Catch the ball, answer a question


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CNT returns to Amman – November 2019


The CNT Team returned in November to complete the training of our third group of LPJ teachers of English in Jordan. Since their initial training in November 2018, these teachers had gained confidence in the new teaching methods and posted their lessons on a WhatsApp forum. The photographs below show a busy workshop on its first day.


For the next three days, the tutors travelled around Jordan observing the teachers in their classrooms. The tutors were very pleased with the innovative sessions they saw and the progress that these teachers had made. Continue reading

CNT returns to Palestine April 2019

We wondered what we would find in the West Bank when we returned three years after our last visit.  Our previous contact, Fr Faysal Hijazeen, died very suddenly in 2016.  His successor, Fr Iyad Twal, the Education Director in Palestine and Israel for the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem (LPJ), was previously at Bethlehem University.  He has developed a five-year programme in which every member of the educational system will receive training.  CNT is providing the training for the teachers of English.

The teachers and the tutors on the steps of Birzeit Church, built by the Christian and Muslim community
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A Life-Changing Experience

Jifna Summer Camp

Kathryn Lland, some of whose other activities for the Trust are recorded elsewhere on this site (English Lessons and Running for the Trust) wrote the following article for the November, 2009, issue of The Vine, the Northampton Diocesan Newsletter, about the four weeks she spent in Palestine in July, 2009, teaching English in the Jifna Summer Camp. We are grateful to the Diocese and to the Vine’s editor for their permission to reproduce the text and images from the article here:

“The experience was one that can only be described as life changing and extremely thought provoking and, as anyone who has been to the Holy Land will tell you, one trip to the Middle East and you will never watch the news in the same light again!

Children at the Camp

Children at the Camp

Jifna is a small, mainly Christian village 14 miles north of Jerusalem. The annual Summer Camp runs the whole month of July and is organised for all the children in the village aged between 4 and 18 years old, 180 children in total! The Camp is supported by a dedicated team of local volunteers, university students, local seminarians and primary school teachers, who work tirelessly to give these children a summer to remember. From 8:30am to 2pm children between 4 and 12 years old are able to take part in activities including arts and crafts, music, sport, aerobics, religion and swimming lessons at the local swimming pool. From 4pm to 10pm it is the turn of the teenagers – 13 to 18.

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Running for the Trust

Charity Run

On Friday, March 28, 2008, Kathryn Lland, a long-time supporter of the Trust, ran in the Liverpool half-marathon for the Trust’s benefit. She invited friends and acquaintances to sponsor her by making donations through the Charities Aid Foundation at www.cafonline.org. She completed the run in 2 hours and 8 minutes, and collected more than £875 in sponsorship contributions for the Trust. The pictures below were provided by courtesy of Marathonfoto. The money will go through CNT to one or two schools in the Holy Land, including Ashrafieh, where Kathryn helped as a student teacher in September 2007.

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon - photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon – photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

Kathryn, sponsored by the CNT, returned to Jifna Parish in July 2009 to assist in the running of their annual summer camp. This extends over the entire month of July and offers around 120 children the opportunity to combine catechism and peace eduction with swimming courses, art, music, sport and handicrafts.

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon - photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon – photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon - photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

Kathryn at the Liverpool Marathon – photo courtesy of Marathonfoto

English Lessons

English Lessons with ‘Miss Kathryn’ and ‘Miss Emma’

In September 2007, two students from Liverpool University, Kathryn and Emma, spent two weeks at Al Ashrafieh, a junior school in Misdar. They took as many educational aids as they could squeeze in their luggage. The children responded enthusiastically to the lively, creative activities in the dual language books.

Kathryn, from Bedford, 100_1155applied to the Catenian Bursary Fund, which generously gave £300Kathryn and a student towards travel costs. Bursary Fund Chairman, Peter Martin said: “We are delighted the Bursary Fund can assist Catholic students to help with education in the Holy Land. We are willing to fund projects with the Christian Schools in Jordan and Palestine”. Kathryn subsequently ran a half marathon to raise more money for Al Ashrafieh. Here are some extracts from Kathryn’s diary:

The school day begins at 7.20 am with a short assembly outside on the tarmac playground with the children lined up in their respective classes. A short drill follows and the national anthem is sung. Then a few prayers but all-in-all the assembly is kept quite short.

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