Students encouraged to ‘sock it to poverty’ during World Mission Month

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Students encouraged to ‘sock it to poverty’ during World Mission Month

Catholic school students from around Tasmania have been taking part in Catholic Mission’s ‘sock it to poverty’ initiative Socktober, celebrating October as World Mission Month.

This year, the focus of the fundraising has been on the Ugandan village of Bujuni.

Director of Mission for the Archdiocese of Hobart Rafal Kozlowski descirbes Bujuni as so tiny that it’s impossible to find on Google Maps.

“It’s very small and poor but still the community is very strong.  Missionaries found this place and built a church, a Catholic school and a health centre,” he said.

“We are helping the children in Bujuni and also the health clinic, because unfortunately many children suffer from malaria in this region of the world.”

One Tasmanian primary school that got involved in Socktober this year was Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic School in Lenah Valley.

Students raised money by paying a gold coin to wear crazily-coloured socks for the day – with some students reportedly going even further to wear socks as skirts, in their hair or on their arms, while the Grade Two class hosted a ‘Rock Your Socks Off’ dance party during lunchtime.

As a follow up to the fundraising, school chaplain Mary-Anne Johnson spoke to the Grade Two class about her own experience of visiting Uganda.

Mr Kozlowski says that initiatives like Socktober are an opportunity to highlight the work of missionaries, and that assisting these projects has an important faith dimension.

“Like Pope Francis said, the Church is not an NGO – just an organisation providing resources. I think that Socktober and other initiatives regarding mission are always a chance to see the person in need as Christ himself because he said that whenever we help people in need, we are opening ourselves to him,” he said.

Photo: Students from Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic School in Lenah Valley took part in Catholic Mission’s Socktober initiative last month.