CHILE: Salesian Educational Center in Talca supports families impacted by coronavirus pandemic
(MissionNewswire) The Salesian Educational Center (CEST), located in Talca, Chile, continues to provide baskets of food and personal hygiene items to families most affected by the coronavirus pandemic. CEST also continues to educate and support youth within its community.
Mauricio Espinoza, president of the CEST General Parental Center, thanked all of the families who shared their resources. He added, “The team prepares and organizes baskets, and for products we don’t have or are a little more expensive, like vegetables, we buy them ourselves.”
The delivery of parcels takes place at the Sur Institute office or directly to the homes of families, including families who are in preventive quarantine. From July 13-17, 138 baskets were delivered. Espinoza explained that it was a collaborative effort. He said, “As a group, we must continue to work and continue to add people to help and share as brothers.”
To help support this work, CEST has a commission led by Father Pedro Pablo Cuello, director of the Salesians in Talca. The commission identifies student challenges and uses a network to provide support to them and their families. CEST continues to keep in touch with students and parents, and it identified several youth who have had internet connection issues, which prevented them from engaging in online education. CEST provided equipment and internet access to the families to support youth in continuing their education.
According to the World Bank, Chile has a fairly low poverty rate of 14.4 percent. However, Chile struggles with high rates of income and education inequality. Salesian missionaries working in Chile focus their efforts on providing education and social services to poor and at-risk youth. At Salesian schools, universities and youth centers throughout the country, youth can access an education as well as the skills and resources necessary to break the cycle of poverty.
As a result of the vocational and technical education provided by Salesian programs, Chilean youth are more likely to find stable employment and improve their standard of living.
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Salesian Missions – Chile
World Bank – Chile