ACAF Inaugurates Sister Peggy Byrne Learning Center for 250 Impoverished Children
On Sister Peggy Byrne’s birthday June 2nd a heartfelt ceremony took place in Chimbote when ACAF inaugurated the Sister Peggy Byrne Community Learning Center. The center was named in honor of Sister Peggy, one of ACAF’s founders and a driving force in education for the neediest children and young people in the community.
Attendees at the event included leaders of several neighborhood programs, parents of many of the children who will benefit from the center, ACAF staff and board members, and special mission visitors from Dickey, North Dakota who were visiting and volunteering in Chimbote. All those present were happy to see that the children now have modern and expanded facilities in which to study.
ACAF Executive Director, Jorge Villar Reyes, stated that the Learning Center will benefit more than 250 children and young people, and emphasized that one of the institution’s priorities is to contribute to the development of a quality education within the reach of those who have least.
He also pointed out that the name of the center was chosen due to the important social effort made by Sister Peggy who came to Chimbote as a missionary for just two months and stayed for over 28 years, serving and helping those in need. And so ACAF, wanting to recognize Sister Peggy’s birthday in a special way, decided to rename and inaugurate the center on this special day.
Of course none of this would have been possible were it not for the generous donation of Randy and Julie Thorson, of North Dakota, USA, who enabled ACAF to make the necessary upgrades to the facility; thus improving the learning experience of hundreds of children.
ACAF board member Rafael Tamariz and his wife Angelina were honoured to be the Padrino and Madrina of the center and reiterated the importance of having access to a quality education, and committed themselves to continue working for the welfare of the children.
The center will benefit over 250 children and teenagers, starting with kindergartens for ages 3, 4 and 5 year olds, libraries and tutoring programs for primary and secondary aged students as well as a psychology program to ensure that all of their needs are met. In addition an on-site soup kitchen will provide meals for the students as well as their families.