EAST TIMOR: Salesian past pupils ship masks, computers and more
Salesian past pupils in China send 10 shipments of goods to Salesian programs
(MissionNewswire) Salesian Father Francis Hung, from the province of Mary Help of Christians in China, has taken a special interest in supporting Salesian programs in East Timor. In 2018, Fr. Hung attended an Association of Past Pupils Convention in East Timor and saw firsthand some of the difficulties Salesians face in the country providing for youth in need.
When he returned to China, Fr. Hung collected many theological and philosophical books, equipment for mechanical workshops, and about 100 computers and uniforms that he sent in a first shipment of goods.
In 2019, a second container with more than 10,000 t-shirts were shipped thanks to past pupil Stephen Mok with the coordination of another past pupil, Michael Eng. At the end of 2019, H.P. Chan, another past pupil, moved the headquarters of his factory from Shenzhen to Thailand, leaving factory surplus unused. It included computer numerical control machines, which are extremely useful in industry, and he donated these machines to Salesians in East Timor.
Working with H.P Chan, Salesians shipped seven containers that included the computer numerical control machines, desks, cabinets, workbenches, hydraulic forklifts, projectors, microscopes, chairs, fans and more. A final container, making 10 in total, was shipped during the pandemic and included 300,000 face masks donated by past pupil Andrew Chiu. The shipment also included forehead thermometers, computers for distance learning and many other items.
“I want to express our sincere gratitude and our thanks to Michael Eng and Stephen Mok, who organized the Past Pupils of Don Bosco in Hong Kong to support Salesian programs in East Timor. I would also like to thank Fr. Francis Hung, who is the main driver of this charity work,” said Father Adriano de Jesus, a Salesian missionary in East Timor.
Salesian missionaries are known for their education programs for youth around the globe. With countless elementary, secondary and university level educational centers as well as training and certification programs, Salesian missionaries are helping to provide a direct path out of poverty for many youth and their families. Programs rely on donations such as those provided by IRN to keep facilities functional for students and staff.
East Timor is home to 1.1 million people and according to the Human Development Index, the country ranked 132 out of 189 for life expectancy, access to education and standard of living in 2018. The World Bank estimates that East Timor has close to 49 percent of its population living in poverty with over one-third of the population regularly experiencing food shortages. In addition, close to 50 percent of the population is illiterate.
Salesian missionaries in East Timor have been providing programs to help residents recover and rebuild in the wake of a devastating civil war in the country that claimed countless lives, decimated entire communities and resulted in living conditions that are among the worst in the world. Now that the violence has subsided, efforts are being focused on helping the poor, restoring hope and providing new opportunities for the future.
ANS Photo (usage permissions and guidelines must be requested from ANS)
Salesian Missions – East Timor
World Bank – East Timor/Timor-Leste