Seventy three nervous looking young adults arrived from all four corners of the country to attend the welcome ceremony and become students at the Redemptorist Technological College for People with Disabilities.
The new college year started early and the welcome ceremony is one that takes place each year, and for the new arrivals it is an event that many wished they didn’t have to attend.
They make their way to the auditorium across the sports court, wearing the yellow and red school t-shirt, and are applauded by the current students, teachers and international volunteer teachers.
But as they wheeled themselves, or hobbled on sticks and crutches, many did so with their face towards the ground. Trying not to make eye contact, to be as inconspicuous as possible; most new students lack confidence and self-esteem, and now all eyes are on them.
They repeat the student oath that is said in all colleges and universities, then they receive their new uniforms and are helped into them by their new teacher.
Father Peter blessed hundreds of small white pieces of string which were tied onto the writs of the new students to wish them the best of luck.
While it was a ceremony to welcome the new students, Father Peter also welcomed the new international volunteer teachers who this term come from the United States, Germany, Vietnam, Thailand and the United Kingdom.