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Carol Adrienne

Your Unfolding Path
November 2003

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Carol's Current Column

by Carol Adrienne, Ph.D.

Carol Adrienne's work and teachings have been a great inspiration to me!  In August of 1998, about four months after my father passed away, I read about one of Carol's workshops in a Learning Annex catalog and synchronistically found her book on a bookshelf at the bookstore.  The themes of her teachings were familiar and comforting, as they confirmed the thoughts and ideas my father had shared with me shortly before his passing.  Her books and workshops ignited my spiritual curiosity, setting me on my soulful life path, which led to the very creation of SoulfulLiving.com!  Carol's participation has been an integral part of SoulfulLiving.com, at its soul level!  Thank you, Carol, with all my heart!
~Valerie, Founder and Soul, SoulfulLiving.com

Writing to Heal

In October I was in Italy where I taught two seminars and reconnected with old friends. Their story is a good example of listening to intuition, taking action, and being of service in the world.

In the last two years, my friends Giorgio Cerquetti and Gerardo Monteforte and others have succeeded in building the Bakhita Centre in Africa. Named after Mother Bakhita, the first black female saint, the Centre features among other developing projects, the Gerard Primary School, which provides much-needed education to pre-school up to high school age children.

A Desire to Serve

The idea for the Centre came about three years ago when Monteforte’s brother, a builder in Kenya who had developed a resort there, decided to return to Italy to live. Monteforte, who for a long time had a desire to make a contribution to others, saw an opportunity to give back. He decided to buy the resort from his brother, and create a business that would help employ thirty local families, as well as fund a new school for children who would otherwise not have an education. He and Cerquetti had a vision to create a self-sustaining venture that would give these families a way out of the bleak future of this impoverished area.

Vision Plus Action

Their first step was to build the school for children, and they organized a work party in August of this year. The second step is to raise money to pay for two nurses, and to put in a dispensary. The third step involves installing a desalinization plant to make drinking water. Cerquetti, an author and public speaker as well as a long-time advocate of vegetarianism, women’s rights, and universal goodwill, told me, "We wanted to build a school that would become self-sustaining, and encourage the people here to be in charge of their future. We also wanted to set up a sponsoring process so people who believe in the long-term value of education in the lives of these African children can get directly involved. The children remain living with their families, but the cost of adopting a child (210 Euro a year--a little less than $250 US) covers their tuition and school supplies. You can decide if you want to adopt a boy or a girl, but girls here rarely have a chance to go to school."

The school is located in Maiungu, Kenya, near Malindi. At the Bakhita Centre, the teachers, the families and the pupils work together. The teachers are non-denominational. They are open to a constructive dialogue, motivating and encouraging the children with patience and love. Families contribute at least half of their children’s education.

And who was Mother Bakhita? Gerardo Monteforte took me to meet the Catholic sisters in the Venice nunnery where Mother Bakhita lived. My Italian is limited, but they showed me the chapel where her picture is displayed and gave me a small brochure describing her life. She was born in Sudan in 1869 of a well-to-do family with three sisters and three brothers. While still a little girl, she was kidnapped for the slave trade. Kept in chains and tortured, she suffered in silence. Sold to an Italian consul, he took her to Venice, Italy, where she ran away to the convent. Evidently there was a court case, and the nuns won, and Bakhita was freed. She became a nun and on October 1, 2000, she was proclaimed a Saint by Pope John Paul II. Now, this school is another of the good works inspired by this remarkable woman.

Many of the people I meet talk about wanting to make a difference in the world, but aren’t sure how to do it. In this column, I try to find people who are pioneers in finding ways to share our wealth. What I love about this project is that it is already up and running. Management is simple. Funds go directly to the school. Kids are getting a chance to learn and live in a healthier environment. I believe education is the key to self-determination and creativity and self-esteem—all necessary for life and positive development. I was particularly moved by the idea that few girls are able to attend school, as families’ slender resources are usually given to educate their sons. I decided to sponsor a girl. Throughout the year, the children will send drawings and letters and school notebooks to communicate with their "adopted" parents. My friend, Giulia Amici shared two drawings, each with a row of seven different trees, that she received from her two students, Riziki Chako and Baraka Kahindi. In the background of one drawing is a big red heart planted in the ground like a little tree.

Here is a letter which I received recently from Giovanna Cescon, the secretary of the foundation, Luce Universale in Venice:

Dear Carol,

By adopting a child from Majungu through the Distance Adoption program, you are ensuring his/her maintenance and schooling. However, it is important to note that all the children will get benefit from your gift: the money sent by you will be used to purchase food, clothing, exercise books, pencils and books, for the entire school.

The minimum contribution required is at least € 210.00 a year. We are kindly requesting you to help your child to complete the first five years of primary school, but you may also cancel your participation at any time by informing us through a letter addressed to Luce Universale.

After you have submitted your application to Luce Universale – ONLUS and sent this small amount of money, we will send you a Distance Adoption Certificate and a photo with the biodata of the child.

From that moment on, you will be in contact with the child, who will write or will send a drawing to you regularly. In case you wish to personally meet your adopted child,

Luce Universale – ONLUS will be glad to make your wish come true.

Best regards,
Giovanna Cescon
Ass. Luce Universale onlus

One can visit the school and also have a seaside vacation at the adjacent resort. Cerquetti told me, "We wanted a place where we would be able to invite people to visit Africa, be near the children, and stay in comfortable surroundings. We think it is important to focus on creating fun, relaxation, and joyful living to set an example that doing good in the world doesn’t have to mean sacrifice and suffering. We also wanted to provide a livelihood for the families so that the school is not dependent on constant fund raising."

If you’d like to join me in making sure these kids get a chance to learn and grow beyond their circumstance, please send an email to Giorgio Cerquetti at gio.cerquetti@libero.it. If you wish to speak to him (he speaks English!) about staying at the Resort call him on his cell phone (Italy is 9 hours ahead of Pacific Time) at 011 39 338-8400 483. The resort has thatched roof bungalows, swimming pools, tennis courts, and all the comforts of a large hotel on the beach. A stay of nine days and seven nights from July 20th to March 30th costs about 1,200 Euro—(a percentage of this amount goes to the Gerard Primary School.) I think you can even set up a Safari with the resort if you want to explore the area’s wildlife. To get there, you fly to Nairobi and then take a flight to Malindi, which is on the Indian Ocean just above Mombasa. If you speak or read Italian you can visit www.luceuniversale.org or send an email to Giovanna Cescon at luceuniversale@yahoo.it or call them at 011 39 041 5351436. If you are seriously interested in going to Africa, we might even go as a group, so let me know by email, and I’ll see how many people are interested. Go ahead, make a difference! And have some fun for yourself in the bargain.

© Copyright 2003 Carol Adrienne, Ph.D. All Rights Reserved.

Carol Adrienne, Ph.D., is an internationally-known workshop facilitator and author whose books have been translated into over fifteen languages. Her latest book is When Life Changes, or You Wish It Would. Oprah hailed, The Purpose of Your Life: Finding Your Place in the World Using Synchronicity, Intuition, and Uncommon Sense a must-read. She is also the author of The Numerology Kit. An electronic copy of Your Child’s Destiny—a numerological guide for parents is now available at www.CarolAdrienne.comm. Carol is available to for keynotes, workshops, and seminars and can be reached at Carol22@sonic.net or (510) 528-2226 weekdays 10 am to 6 pm PST.



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