Our Work » Liberia Mission
Liberia Mission, Inc.
The primary project of Franciscan Works is Liberia Mission Inc., begun in 2003. Located in West Africa, Liberia Mission is a community of love, learning, work and prayer. Here, poor and orphaned children - survivors of Liberia's long and brutal civil war - are learning to become future leaders in their families, communities, and country. Liberia Mission provides education and residential support to desperately poor children with few if any formal learning opportunities.
Liberia Mission consists of a secure ten-acre campus and an adjoining 15 acre farm property that houses St. Anthony of Padua School, St. Michael the Archangel Chapel, separate residence buildings for boys, girls and accommodations for program managers and American volunteers.
The school is staffed by Liberian administrators and teachers, and accredited by the Liberian Education Council and the Ministry of Education. Liberian houseparents, cooks and security guards staff the residential program. Altogether, over 35 Liberians are employed in some aspect of the Liberia Mission project. A small contingent of Americans provides overall coordination and policy guidance.
The Children of Liberia Mission
There are 382 students enrolled at St. Anthony School for the 2011-2012 academic year in grades K-9. There are 110 students (beneficiaries) who reside at the mission. Most of them attend St. Anthony School, although 15 older students now attend nearby senior high school and university.
Although most children come from nearby villages, children in the residential program originate from a widely dispersed geography around the country. Altogether, several different tribal groups are represented in the school population. What all the children have in common is that each one has been scarred by the continuing effects of the devastating civil war that plagued Liberia for more than a decade through the year 2003, and all of them have experienced deep poverty.
Mission, Goals, Objectives
The overriding mission for Franciscan Works is to bring about a life-transforming change in the lives of children at Liberia Mission. We will implement this mission by the active pursuit of three goals:
- Provide a loving home for children in residence.
- Provide a quality academic and moral education to St. Anthony students.
- Impart life-skills training to prepare the children for adult responsibilities.
Our education program at its core is a community development effort that will one day provide tangible economic benefits. The objective is to produce educated adults of character and integrity who can support themselves and their families and contribute to their national economy through a productive career. It requires years of dedication and investment to bring this about. The challenge is very difficult in countries that experience intergenerational poverty, lack a strong commitment to an educational infrastructure or have been virtually destroyed by war.