From a Special Correspondent
A scheme whereby British and Austrian schools exchange parties of children, each making itself responsible for the hospitality of the other, is now being
It will make it possible for many hundreds of holiday in Austria, staying with Austrian families. British children to afford a six to eight weeks'
In addition, the Austrian' Government is inviting parties of needy British children for free holidays in Austria as a mark of gratitude for the hospitality shown to Austrian children.
Since the summer of 1947 well over 1,000 Austrian children have enjoyed the hospealey of British families, 40 towns having formed committees to facilitate this.
I had the pleasure of escorting the first party of British children, selected by child welfare authoritzes in Liverpool, Preston, Halifax and Dover, to Grundlsee, one of the most beautiful parts of the Austrian Alps, last August,
The children are now home again after a marvellous six weeks holiday, which included excursions to Graz. Salzburg, and other parts of Austria.
The Austrian people gave these children a most warm and generous welcome, and invitations have been received from the appropriate departments of the Austrian Government for further parties of British children to receive. similar holidays in Austria during 1950.
Over a third of the children in the first party were Catholics. who went to Mass at the Gnindlsee Church, and one of the four British youth-leaders who accompanied thi party and remained with them fo' the duration of the holiday was Catholic young man, who, for the nest eight months has been working at Pestalozeidorf, the International Children's Village at Trogen, Switi zerland.
Practically the whole of the 1,000 Austrian children who received him'vitality' in Great Britain were Cath olics, and this applies, also, to a dfuurrtihnegr 1390050, who will be received
Offers of hospitality from Catholic families, or offers from Catholic parishes to undertake the reception of a group of these children during 1950, will be very welcome,
But in addition to what has become a two-way Anelo-Austrian relief work for children, the Austrian Government has now invited the Austrian Children Recention Committee and the Anglo-Austrian Society to facilitate school-withscheol hospitality-exchange holidays between our two countries.
Many Austrian schools are anxious to arrange for groups of :moils to visit onoosite number schools in Great Britain, and to offer return hoseitality in Austria. The idea is that the euests be received into the families of the schools in auestion. viz. families of school ;moils. and that the parents of the children who narticinate in an Angio-Ausir'an Hospitality exchange. nay the travel costs on behalf of their own son or daughter.
While in Austria, the organisation will be undertaken by the approvesee Government Denartment work log With school principals. in Great Prita'n the orraresation will be enderteken by the Austrian Children Reception Committee and the Anglosoisfrian Society. also. of course working in co-oneration with the Princinats of Brifsh schools, and Briesh Education Committees
It is the organisers' intention always to find the most appropriate opposite-number schools and they
are anxious to contact Catholic schools in the British Isles both boys and girls willing to consider organising an exchange holiday with Catholic schools of similar standing, in the Tyrol. Salzburg, Styria, Carinthia or Vienna.
Every endeavour will be made to end matching schools, and it is hoped that the principals of the matched schools will make advance contacts by correspondence, and that, in as many cases as possible, the pupils will enter into a correspondence with their prospective child-hosts or hostesses, who will also become their guests.
The scheme should be of particular interest to those Catholic schools in Well German is taught.
Those interested should write to the Austrian Children Reception Committee, 276 Hughenden Road. High Wycombe, Bucks.