URUGUAY, by Matías Cerviño •
As part of German President Joachim Gauck’s visit to Uruguay, his partner Daniela Schadt visited the Providencia Educational Center, a social project of the Schoenstatt Movement in Montevideo.
Daniela arrived to Providencia close to noon and the members of the Board, some of Providencia’s educators and mothers welcomed her. “We were very nervous before she arrived; we asked ourselves how we should greet her. The funny thing was that during the visit we gained confidence and were completely at ease, we bid her farewell with a kiss and an embrace”, commented Aurea, mother of Gonzalo, who is a student of the school. The tour began at the Children’s Club, where Schadt stopped at every room and asked down to even the smallest details so that she could understand work with the 330 children and youths who attend daily, what their activities are, the results and future goals.
The children had many questions
Then she crossed to Providencia School and the Youth Center, where the second year students of the Basic Cycle waited for her in the classroom to ask her about her life as President Gauck’s partner, her story and work as a journalist and about her visit to Uruguay. During this exchange, the many questions and the children’s concerns surprised Schadt, which led her to encourage them to become journalists.
Finally, Daniela sat to chat with the group that accompanied her throughout the visit, and the mothers were the main participants in this conversation. “You can tell she is a journalist because she asked us many things, she wanted us to tell her how we came to Providencia, how we accompanied our children, how we felt here. During the chat, we noticed that she enjoyed being here. She also told us about herself and about Germany. That is why we told her in trust, about our need for continued help, and we told her about our dreams for the future”, Aurea commented.
For Laura Voituret, the Coordinator of Institutional Development, this visit reinforced the bond that already exists between Providencia and Germany. Moreover, it is symbolically powerful for a Schoenstatt social project: “It is very important for us and above all; it is a very valuable message for the world that a First Lady came personally to learn about the work that the Embassy, and therefore, the German people support. It was important that she sat to talk to and to meet the families and the children and that she took interest to see the social reality of the country first-hand. Especially for the Schoenstatt bond that unites us with Germany.