Twinning is an initiative of the De La Salle Christian Brothers (Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools) that encourages Districts that are financially able to aid those most in need. In the Lasallian Region of North America (RELAN), middle and secondary schools in United States and Toronto are twinned with 14 ministries in four countries in the Lwanga District of Africa: Kenya, Nigeria, Eritrea and Ethiopia. While the RELAN schools help support the Lwanga ministries financially, the students also build relationships as brothers and sisters in the Lasallian family to share challenges, accomplishments, stories and experiences.
The program began in 1995 in response to a call from the Institute to financially assist economically poor Districts and new Districts that were forming. A goal was to help these Districts achieve financial self-sufficiency in the long term.
The high cost of education in Africa presents a major challenge for most students who are financially poor and even without families in some cases. Therefore, the ministries subsidize much of the cost. To limit additional costs, students in Africa are responsible for many chores on campus, including cleaning buildings and maintaining grounds, growing food, and preparing, serving, and cleaning up after meals. Ministries use twinning donations for tuition assistance, maintenance and expansion of school facilities, the purchase of books and class materials, and other essential school expenses.
Twinning in the Time of Coronavirus
Despite the challenges posed by COVID-19, efforts to maintain and enhance relationships shared between twinned ministries in RELAN and Lwanga continue. In April 2020, we provided updates on the Lwanga ministries and Zoom calls brought together twinning coordinators from the Region, Districts, RELAN schools and Lwanga ministries. Throughout the summer and into fall, we maintained close contact with the Lwanga Brothers to share updates on impacts and plans for the 2020-2021 academic year. In September 2020, twinning coordinators received new resources, including updates on COVID-19 impacts to individual Lwanga ministries and a video message from Brother Timothy Coldwell, FSC, RELAN General Councilor, and Brother Ghebreyesus Habte, FSC, Lwanga District Visitor. As we entered 2021, we continued to maintain contact with the Lwanga Brothers and receive updates on the status of their ministries.
- Video message from Brothers Timothy and Ghebreyesus
- Winter 2021 Lwanga District update
- 2021 general resources
- Resources by Lwanga ministry
- Prayer – Lent version
- Prayer – short version
- Logo (jpeg)
- Remittance form
- Lwanga District website
- Lasallian Region of Africa (RELAF) website
- Twinning stories
District of Eastern North America
District of San Francisco New Orleans
Christian Brothers Conference coordinates RELAN’s twinning program, facilitates communication between twinned schools, and serves as a resource center.