Welcome to the May newsletter of Centru Tbexbix
The highlight of May was the fourth residential weekend at Buskett bungalow for our children, among the other regular activities, news of which we are always happy to be sharing with you.
Widening our horizons:
The exchange of messages between our children and those from other countries featured very highly this past month. We are grateful to our EVS volunteers who are making this possible.
(1) Malta – Berlin
Our ex-volunteer Marie wrote:
During my last month in Malta I gave a presentation about Germany to children from Centru Tbexbix and from another school. Afterwards the children had the opportunity to write messages to German children which I promised to pass on to children from Berlin.
Hence I was searching for a bilingual school after my return. This wasn’t as easy as I imagined, but finally I found a school club which is like the English Club in Centru Tbexbix. The pupils who I met go there voluntarily to improve their English skills.
Most of them didn’t even know where Malta is and were very impressed by the pictures I showed them. All of the children were so happy to get the messages and each of them created their own personal answer.
I think this exchange of letters is a good way to increase the children’s curiosity for new cultures. It can increase their interest in other languages and let them know that people abroad are just like you and me.. with perhaps a few different cultural peculiarities ;)!
(2) Malta - Esens
Another ex-volunteer who was involved in a similar project was Christine, who left Malta for the second time a couple of weeks ago.
During her last few days in Malta she gave our children a presentation about her country, and asked them to write messages which she carried home with her.
It was only a few days after her return home that she arranged a visit to a school in Esens, North Germany, where she gave a presentation about Malta and passed on the messages from our children. In return the German children replied and as usual our children were happy to receive their communications and drawings. In the photo the children from Esens are showing their messages to Centru Tbexbix children.
(3) Malta - Russia
Natasha from Russia has been gone for more than a year now, but she still thinks of her time here with the children. When a friend of hers visited Malta recently, she was quick to inspire the children from the school in Russia where she is now teaching, to send a message to Maltese kids together with a few of their paintings and stitchcraft designs.
We are now planning for our children to start communication with these Russian children in the next scholastic year.
(4) Turkish song
Since the start of our participation in the EVS programme, our focus on intercultural activities has always been strong. Not only power point presentations, but also songs in the native language of our volunteers now form a big collection. In the photo Ogun is teaching the Turkish song “Mavilim”.
A gardener’s daughter
Bettina’s father is a gardener, so it is not surprusing that she is keen to pass on some gardening skills to our children. Read below about her recent experience:
In spring it is the time to plant. Since we have a very nice little garden in our centre I thought it would be good for our children to learn more about plants, experience what it means to take care of them and discover what benefits we get from plants.
First “LARRY THE LEAF” showed us what he needs to grow and we coloured “LARRY” as well as all the things that are useful for him to live.
After a small discussion about the benefit of plants we read a text on this theme and filled in the gap text. The children knew a lot of the benefits plants give to us and the planet.
Finally all small gardeners were allowed to plant their own herb.
Filling soil in pots and putting the seeds in it was a practical way for the children to find out how long it needs and what a lot of work it takes to grow some herbs for our food. Then we searched for a suitable place where to put our plants and the children are watering them regularly..
Some of them are growing very fast and others slowly. Now the children see it as their duty to care for the herbs in the centre and to water them when needed.
Bomba this relaxation :)
Our last yoga shoots session for the scholastic year was held at the end of this month. Arianna has become very competent and confident in giving yoga class to the children. She writes:
Today, 26th of May, we had a class of 21 Year 6 children from Birkirkara. They were very loud and active...sometimes a bit too excited, but on the whole they were nice and sweet...
The yoga sessions went well, although sometimes a bit chaotic;) What surprised me was the fact that all of them really enjoyed the relaxation after the stretching and the yoga position. Some of them asked me to write them the short and simple story that I usually narrate to them during the relaxation, and even whether I could send them by email the music that we usually use as background.
The following are some comments of the children after the yoga:
- Miss! Can you come to our school to do it again? Can you come to do this sleeping?( the relaxation)
- How nice this music is....What's the name of this music?
- Can you write me the story you told us during the sleeping?
- Can you send me this song by email?
- Thank you miss! bomba bomba this relaxation! ;)
- Can you come to do this relaxation in my house on Thursday when I have to go to sleep very early. At the moment on Fridays I have to wake up really early...and I don't know how to do...
- Miss...thank you very much for the lovely experience ;)
- Did you create this music?? It' s perfect to sleep...
And in the end of the lesson when we usually ask what they enjoyed most during the lesson almost all mentioned the “sleeping”, the relaxation...
Challenges – and confirmation of parents’ support
I suppose all of you have heard by now of the suspension of EU funds for Youth in Action programmes as well as Lifelong learning. This suspension might effect us if the situation is not resolved quickly, because for the time being we can no longer apply to host EVS volunteers. Faced with this dilemma, we decided to write an appeal to the Minister concerned as well as the local representative of the EU commission, wherein we explained what an important element to our educational programmes this EVS scheme is. We asked the parents to support us through a petition in this appeal. In a couple of days we were overwhelmed with signatures! It is very encouraging that the parents of our children appreciate the validity of our programme.
Together with other NGOs Centru Tbexbix was invited to participate in an exhibition at the Ministry of Education, Employment and the Family as part of the activities planned for the EuropeanYear for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion. The exhibition lasted for one week and was visited, among others, by the Permanent Secretary in the same Ministry (photo).
A weekend of learning and fun
As usual, for this fourth residential weekend with the theme “Close to Nature”, the response and enthusiasm of the children were never lacking. From days before, the excitement was building up, and the attendance was a record 34 children. The activities were mostly outdoors, ranging from water games, dressing up race, to a treasure hunt in San Anton garden, Attard.
We also managed to gain entry into the President’s private garden, where we even had the chance to meet the President himself.
Most of the children have by now got used to eating vegetarian food when we are together, and none of them goes hungry. They understand that vegetarian food is food which they have eaten many times at home, like breakfast cereals, fruit, yogurt, cheese on toast, tomatoes, carrots, and of course spagetti with home made pesto sauce which is a favourite, same as the ravioli.
These events are an educational experience not only for the children, but also for us, who are always looking for ways and strategies how to train the children to live together in a harmonious loving way, allowing for each other’s differences and trying to find a balance in a way that everyone goes home happy and perhaps a little bit stronger in character and wiser in the knowledge of themselves and others..
There are many different ways how to contribute to the success of Centru Tbexbix. Through volunteering (in classes, administration, odd jobs, maintenance), donations in kind or financially, etc. The opportunities are endless.
One way to support the efforts of Centru Tbexbix is through the "Friends of Centru Tbexbix" scheme with a small monthly contribution by standing order. Centru Tbexbix holds the following accounts: HSBC 013-085675-001 and BoV 400-1705136-1.
For more information on how you can help, call us on
21/27 805130 or send an email to email@example.com.
This newsletter will be coming to you every end of the month, with the intention of keeping regular contact with the growing circle of friends of Centru Tbexbix, keeping everyone informed of what is happening as well as sharing the inspiration of this blossoming community project. The intention is to keep it brief and factual. Your comments and suggestions are appreciated.