We’ve all been eagerly awaiting the event of the summer: Daniel’s swim across the Strait of Gibraltar, from Spain to Morocco, in order to raise funds for Language Beyond Borders. The swim will significantly take place between the continents of Africa and Europe, where so many lose their lives and their loved ones trying to reach a safer life in Europe.
Even when a brave soul makes it to Spain’s southern shores, the difficulty doesn’t end there. They must find somewhere to live, a way to make ends meet, and build a new life from scratch in a new country, in a new language. Many of us who have spent any time abroad know how difficult it can be to manage from day to day when there is a linguistic barrier between you and everyone else. Imagine that challenge, on top of so much trauma and anguish already experienced by those who didn’t have a choice but to risk their lives to come to Europe. We are trying to alleviate a little of that stress by teaching English – as the host country’s language or a second, international language – to those currently in the process of seeking asylum and others impacted by conflict and fleeing persecution.
Knowing how to communicate with those around you breaks down that liguistic barrier and can decrease feelings of isolation. It can also increase the chances of finding work, entering education and make accessing vital local services much easier.
Daniel’s sponsored swim across the Strait of Gibraltar will help us to reach more students and to continue running classes for our existing, hard-working students. All our teachers are volunteers, but funds are needed to coordinate the classes, run our web-presence and communications and train our volunteers. Unfortunately, the scheduled swim has been delayed, and for a very unusual reason!
Daniel’s swim has been postponed until November! What has been described as ‘unforeseen maritime traffic’ has created a backlog in the Strait which means that Daniel must wait. Upon further enquiry, it would seem that this ‘unforeseen traffic’ was in fact the Prince of Morocco on his jet ski! All maritime traffic in the Strait was stopped so that he could safely enjoy the waters off the Moroccan coast! But we’re not giving up! Daniel will continue his intense training, and wait, and we will continue to support him.
Many wait much longer to travel the same route in reverse, and just as our students teach us resilience and patience, Daniel will be applying these same attributes in his training and will be more ready and stronger than ever when the time finally comes for him to cross continents. Please support Daniel’s efforts and our work to reach more students, working with them to build their own futures and expand their own horizons.
You can donate here: https://bit.ly/31gHTcU