Ukraine (MNN/WCCS) — A revered Hungarian elder said, “There are two kinds of people in this world: those who love the Roma and those who do not.”
The Roma, or “Gypsy,” people are indeed one of the most unreached and under-educated people groups in the world. Though stereotypes of wandering Gypsy wagon caravans remain, their lives are anything but the romanticized or vilified images they are portrayed as in movies.
Roma Ministries says the Roma make up about 5-10% of the population in Europe, and they are the most persecuted group on the continent. They are seen as thieves and discriminated against. Many are unemployed because of this.
United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, or UNICEF, says Roma communities have poverty ranks four times higher than national average, and many times the wealthiest of the Romas are uneducated.
Their children, if allowed in school, are often placed in “Special Ed” classrooms, assumed to be less able to learn. Their “disability” is simply being born Roma.
Roma Education Fund reported the European Court of Human Rights held a trial and said segregation of children must end. They noted Roma children had continuously been misdiagnosed with having a mental disability. Because of this, they’ve been restricted to small amounts of education.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, said more than 50% of Roma children in Europe failed to complete their primary education.
Clearly, something had to be done.
Knowing well the sting of discrimination against the Roma, one Hungarian teacher living in Ukraine had an idea: convert an abandoned house into a school for Roma children.
Here they would be safe, tutored, and respected. They would learn how to learn and know that Jesus loved them, too.
Roma Ministries said the Roma people are very open to the Gospel. So the teacher wanted to share with them the love of God as well.
This teacher’s dream inspired Worldwide Christian Schools to provide the funds needed for her house-to-school transformation project and Roma language training costs.
The Roma children are on their way to being educated and learning about Jesus.
WWCS focuses on providing education, clean water, health care, and nutritional services internationally to unreached and uneducated children.
Click here to donate and help unreached children.