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4 October 2022

Living for others

For many teenagers the summer holidays are all about doing what you want, when you want to.  But for 16 girls from Hillcrest Girls’ Club, summer 2022 had something else in store: ten days in Greece living and working for others.

The DHEF vision is for girls and young women to grow in maturity and to foster concern for the needs of others. This is exactly what the Hillcrest girls, aged 15 to 18, gained during their time in Neos Kosmos, a suburb of Athens, where they stayed in a residence run by the Catholic Armenian Community.

Volunteering in the summer camp

The dignity of every human being

Every day was packed for the girls and the four leaders who went with them. They spent some time volunteering at a summer camp for Armenian Catholic children, some of whom were immigrants and from socially deprived backgrounds. The trip gave the girls an important insight into the need to respect the dignity of every human person.

Outreach to refugees

The girls also helped with an outreach to refugee adults, working in a soup kitchen run by the Sisters of Charity of Mother Teresa, and delivering food to families.

A Christian dimension

The Hillcrest team helped out at a clothing store for refugees run by the local bishop. The girls sorted, folded and ironed piles of donated clothing, so that when people came to the store they saw the clothes nicely presented. This is an important way of helping people who live in hardship to retain their self-respect.

The Hillcrest girls were also very fortunate to be accompanied by a priest from London who gave a workshop every day on apologetics, to equip the girls to defend their faith. Going to Mass at the start of each day surely helped the girls to see the Christian dimension to the work they were doing.

“A wonderful experience”

Christina at work in the kitchen

Time spent in the service of others is a time of human and spiritual growth. For Christina: “Going to Greece this summer, giving up time for refugees less fortunate than myself, was a wonderful experience which taught me how to appreciate life and be more selfless and grateful.

“I would thoroughly recommend any Year 10-13 student to get involved in this or any similar social project - you won't regret it!”


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