Lufkin Grad doing mission work in Madagascar FaceTimes with LISD students

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Technology is allowing us to connectwith people we may have never known existed 100-years-ago.

Tuesday morning, some Kurth Primary studentswere able to meet other students in Madagascar through the magic of an Ipad.

The English is rough but students onthe island of Nosy Be were able to tell 2nd graders in Lufkin goodmorning through the FaceTime application on an Ipad.

Speaking to students 9,000miles away took the students learning to a whole new level.

Lufkin high schoolgraduate, Tori Alverson, moved to the tiny island off the coast of Madagascarin April as a missionary with Africa Inland missions. She helps out in a smallvillage where students who are fortunate to go to school have the opportunity.

"It's just a matterof being able to afford school here," Alverson said.

It costs $25 a year for achild to go to school. For many, it is not easy. Most children have to helptheir families make just enough money to get by.

The students in Lufkinwere also able to ask Alverson questions about how she likes living on the island.

"I might not have all mystuff I had back home like my car, or my [air conditioning], my parents or myfamily but I have a new family here," Alverson said.

Alverson's mother is an instructional specialist at Kurth and lead the students in the discussion.

"For the kids to seehow face time can connect them to kids in Africa was just an unbeatableexperience for them," said Yvette Alverson.

The students left with abetter understanding of their new friends.

"I learned that thepeople do not speak the same language that we do," Laprincia McCloud said.

"It's hot there andit's cold here," Logan Trotter said.

"They don't celebrateChristmas," Elisabeth McBride said. "They only really celebrate New Year's."

"They have to pay forschool and we don't," Sariah Morrison said.

The students also learnedthat those on the island play soccer instead of football. They learned also howthey have to sometimes hunt for their food and do not always get to go to thegrocery store.

Before the session ended,the Kurth students shared Texas culture by singing "Deep in the Heart of Texas"for their counterparts in Madagascar.

Alverson is scheduled toremain in Madagascar for the next two years.

To find out how you canhelp Alverson and Africa Inland Missions, you can click here.