The Parish Church of St John-at-Hampstead

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September 2019

Charity Update

Sara Hester and Rosemary Lloyd

The Asra Hawariat School in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, is a non-fee paying, non-religious and non-political voluntary organisation working with those children and families who could not otherwise afford to get an education.

120,000 – the number of children reached and helped since the school’s foundation in 1961

The school currently has 1079 students, 619 of whom are girls. Priority is given to those children who have lost one or both of their parents; next, to children whose lives are seriously disrupted by poverty and who would find even the limited costs of a state education beyond them. Prospective students are screened by a committee comprising the school principal, social workers and selected representatives of parents whose children are already at the school. Once they are accepted, the children are provided with a completely free education with some material support for the neediest children.

Boys 43% Girls 57%

The school’s bias in favour of girls is deliberate as the school believes strongly that female education is vital to social stability and economic growth – as has been borne out by countless studies from many parts of the world. The school runs two campuses in the west of the city, one for grades 1-4 and the other for grades 5-8.


Once again this year, the school achieved good examination results, with 114 of the 116 who took the exam passing with flying colours. Small classes and highly-motivated staff and pupils produce great results. Our pupils know that there is no safety net, so they work impressively hard.

1,079 students 56 teachers

There are 56 teaching staff, some of whom are experienced teachers from the state sector, and some our own former students, including both school principals. Of these 2 are qualified to certificate level, 38 to diploma level while 16 have degrees. Those of who have received this report in previous years will note that the level of teacher-qualification has improved significantly, something that we hope will continue in coming years. There is an ongoing programme of professional development for all teaching staff. The school follows the national curriculum, with adjustments – English language is taught from 1st grade, Science and Mathematics are given extra emphasis. Class sizes are kept small – few classes have more than 30 children, in marked contrast to the state sector where classes of 80+ are not uncommon. This ratio, combined with a reputation for good exam results, firm but fair discipline and traditional teaching methods, is one of the main factors behind the school’s popularity with parents.

£11,000 a month

The school budget for 2019 has meant that we are committed to providing £11,000 a month to the school (and this may well have to be increased during the year). Our fundraising this year fell considerably short (£60,000) of what is needed – a situation that cannot continue if the school is to survive. For a small charity, this a huge undertaking. Your help has been greatly appreciated over the years, but more is needed.

Donate via their website: or to their account

Asra Hawariat School Fund, sort code 98-00-10 A/c number 17667164 or pick up a Gift Aid form at the back of church.

And an update from CARIS Haringey who have been much in our prayers this summer…….

Very many thanks to everyone who has responded so generously to the recent appeal for food and nappies on behalf of CARIS Haringey.    This charity is run by a very small team of dedicated workers, who teach language classes, give legal and housing advice and other services to local people in our next-door borough.  In addition they run a mobile library of children's books and toys for families in temporary accommodation.

Our food contributions go to these families and others who live below the bread line.

CARIS is dependent on charitable funding to keep going, and was successful in a recent application to a Christian trust fund for financial support after Jeremy had written the following recommendation to the trustees:

In support of a recent grant application the Giving Committee said:

“The work which CARIS Haringey undertakes with the poorest in our communities is exactly in accord with the mission and ministry of Hampstead Parish Church.  As we seek to be an inclusive community of Christian love, faith, witness and action we work in partnership with organisations who exemplify these goals.  CARIS Haringey demonstrates faith and love in action.  We are pleased to make both financial and material contributions to their work, and fully support their application for further funding.”

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