BRAZIL: Dom Bosco Educational Center in Gramoré provides food packages to families assisted by local Salesian oratory
(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionaries with Dom Bosco Educational Center in Gramoré in Natal, Brazil, have distributed packages of food to families assisted by the local Salesian oratory. These efforts are part of the #camosjuntos campaign promoted by Parage Norte Shopping Natal. The first distribution was 150 food packages and the second was 250. The efforts are made possible with the support of the Municipal Secretariat for Labor and Social Assistance of Natal and the Union of Urban Transport Companies of the Municipality of Natal.
Since March, Dom Bosco Educational Center has joined efforts with various public and private partners to address food shortages. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Dom Bosco Educational Center has served around 2,000 families with basic food packages and hygiene kits. More than 1,000 people have needed assistance services from the Salesian organization, and they are vulnerable to social and economic risk.
“Salesians in Brazil and around the globe are working to ensure that families have the basic necessities to get through this challenging time,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “Salesian missionaries live in the communities in which they work so they are perfectly positioned to assess local need and ensure that relief supplies make it to the families who are most in need.”
Relief work has been happening in Salesian centers and institutions across the country since March. The Salesian Network, in collaboration with partners, provided 460 youth and their families with food assistance in the city of Manaus on the banks of the Negro River in northwestern Brazil. Families in need were tracked and identified through an app. More than 800 baskets of food were delivered, with deliveries observing the guidelines for coronavirus prevention provided by the World Health Organization. This is just one of many examples of how Salesian organization have rallied together, connected with their networks and helped families in need.
Brazil has one of the strongest economies in Latin America and is an important agricultural and industrial power in the region. Just over 15 percent of Brazilians live in poverty, with the majority living in the rural northeast of the country, according to the World Bank. While Brazil is making positive changes, there are still large gaps between the poor and the rich, and issues of income inequality and social exclusion remain at the root of poverty.
Inequalities also exist in access to education and educational efficiency. These inequalities are greatest for children and youth who are poor, live in rural areas or who have an incomplete compulsory education. Salesian missionaries working with poor youth and their families in Brazil develop programs and provide youth opportunities for furthering their education and skills.
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Salesian Missions – Brazil
World Bank – Brazil