My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Many Hats

With the loss of one of our teachers, I have been filling in as the P5, P6, and JHS1 English and Language Arts teacher.  It has been a joy to be in the classroom again.  To think of ways to inspire creativity in the kids.  To get them excited about learning something new.

But, it's been an incredible challenge as well.  I have had to wear many hats at the same time. 

Formal observations came this week and with them, the question of how do I make this all work? Luckily, Kathy and Emily are always quick to step in and help out.

I have been trying to hire more seamstresses, a principal, an office administrator, a new teacher...all while teaching.

Some days, I think that all I want to do is be back in the classroom.  Other days, I long for time in the office to get a few things done without the noise of a classroom.

My roles have changed over my time here.  At first, I was just a classroom teacher.  Then, I moved into principal.  I help with volunteer coordinating.  I watch the kids occasionally.  I partner with John and Stacy in brainstorming, envisioning, planning what is ahead for us here.

And my many hats are changing again.

My goal in coming and working with CORM was to create a sustainable model of education.  It is almost there.  The missing component has everything to do with staffing.  Yes, we're missing a teaching, but right now, I am thinking about getting a principal in here to take over my position as head of the primary school.

I want to move into a supervisory role over the administration (less day to day running of the school and step out of trying to figure out the headache of Ghanaian curriculum and Ghana Education Service), but really, I want to get my hands dirty again.  I want to be with the kids again.  I want to disciple.  I want to pray over the school.  I want to have the time to really invest in the emotional and spiritual development of our teachers and our students.  I want to have TIME  to be in classrooms, to teach model lessons, to brainstorm units, to come up with new, creative ways to present ideas.  I want to be in the midst of it all...not merely the setting up process.

The months ahead are going to be helping to shape what that new role will look like for me and what the role of principal will look like for the person coming in to take my place.

Much of the envisioning of this has to do with me sitting down and thinking it through...praying for the future of what God desires for me next here.  But, it also has some tangible "to-do's" as well.

With a new, qualified administrative staff, we are looking for people willing to partner with us in child sponsorships to help pave the way for a higher salary bracket for our principal and administrator.  Child Education Sponsorships through Faith Roots International Academy allow us the opportunity to offer education to students whose families struggle to make ends meet, or who are faced with difficult circumstances (health needs, partial or full orphanhood, etc).  Sponsorships are $30, $40, or $50 a month based on a the student's needs.  They everything from school fees, uniform fees, lunch fees, transportation, books, etc (depending on the sponsorship).  Those school fees allow us to pay our teachers and staff appropriate salaries.  The more sponsorships, the more we can offer for our staff (and the more highly qualified staff we can recruit).

Will you pray about partnering with us in this process?  You can play an enormous role in making this school a success!  And be a part of helping me change my many hats into something new!

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