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Dear Friend,

During this time of uncertainty, we hope that you and your families are keeping well.   

Pauline Kersten, Manager of Conway Education Centre in West Belfast, kindly reached out to let us know that the United States remains in her thoughts and prayers during this crisis.  We wanted to share with you her message:

“We hope you are safe and in good health in this unprecedented time. The news from America sounds very worrying and we hope you have good support from families and friends.

Conway Education Centre had to temporarily close our office, but all staff are working from home and we are continuing our services as best we can. Computer technology is a fantastic tool in these circumstances and is allowing us to stay in touch with all our learners and refugee families.

We are using online platforms to continue classes; we have a call divert on our phone system so people calling CEC will continue to get a member of staff on the line to have a chat with or to get information. We have now a system in place to support our most vulnerable learners and a small group of our volunteers is on stand-by to do grocery shops for people who cannot do so themselves and to deliver arts and crafts parcels to our refugee families so the children can participate in our online arts and crafts sessions which we are going to put on our Facebook.

All state examinations such as the GCSE English and Maths, due to happen in May and June, have been cancelled. Students will receive a ‘predicted grade’ based on completed course work, work in class and the professional opinion of the teacher.

To be honest, it is a steep learning curve for me and other staff to learn how to do all of our work online and use these different platforms, being mindfull of data protection and keeping children and young people safe, but we do our best.

It is brilliant to see how communities do pull together and how people help each other in this health crisis, I very much hope it is the same where you live.

You are in our thoughts, please stay safe,

Warm regards on behalf of CEC management committee, staff, volunteers and learners,

Pauline”

From all of us at Conway Mill Trust, please know that all of you remain in our thoughts and prayers.  We will get through these trying times, together.

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