HAIFA – A few months ago, the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem began the repair work of one of its kindergarten and nursery schools in Haifa. It was an urgent project in order to comply with the security measures required by the Ministry of Education.

The Patriarchate’s kindergarten and nursery accommodate 84 children,  between 2 and 5 years old who are Christians or Muslims, all from Haifa and its vicinity. “The work was urgent,” said Mirvat Shuqha, head of the center. “We fought to keep this center.” In fact, unhealthy environments could lead to its closure, and “the children would really be sorry for not being able to come here.” Seven people are employed to run the house, which opened its doors  in 1989. The rehabilitation project lasted a month, from the end of August to September which allowed for the numerous needs to be addressed:

– Renovating the playground of the kindergarten, reclaiming the soil, painting the walls with bright and gay colors suitable for small children, enclosure of the site in order to prevent any accident.

– Interior work of the nursery are in the building, renovation of kitchen and bathrooms for employees, repainting of the windows and balconies.

– Floor in the courtyard in front of the nursery was redone, cracks filled and changes/improvements made on the outdoor playground.

Safety first

Those in charge of the renovation plan made choices, taking into account the budget allocation. Safety of the environment was the priority which the renovations will allow. A new locking system were installed on the doors to avoid the risk of a child being  locked in a room and preventing doors closing on the children’s hands and fingers.   Even the barriers have been made safe, as well as the windows.

Attention was also focused on the welfare of the children and the staff. The air intakes of the air conditioning system were improved, as well as the ventilation system in the bathrooms. The colors and paintings on the walls were carefully chosen so that children can “see something beautiful” around them. Mirvat Shuqha declares that they are “very happy” for these changes because now, thanks to the donors, children and employees can benefit from a place which, although simple, is now safe, pleasant and clean.

Amélie de La Hougue

Mar 27, 2013