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ECUADOR: 12 Achuar students graduate university

Salesian Polytechnic University's Faculty of Bilingual Intercultural Education

Salesian missionaries have been working with Achuar for 50 years


(MissionNewswire) The Salesian Polytechnic University’s Faculty of Bilingual Intercultural Education graduated 12 Achuar students, who are part of an Indigenous population in the Ecuadorian Amazon. This is the fifth graduation from the university of Achuar students who are from the Wasakentsa community in Ecuador.

Father Agustín Togo, rector of the Wasakentsa community, congratulated the new professionals and encouraged them to put the knowledge they have learned into practice for the benefit of their communities, especially for the education of youth.

Salesian missionaries have been working with the Achuar for the last 50 years. The Italian missionary Luigi Bolla was the first to live among the Achuar, sharing his life. Half a century later, Salesian work continues to focus on spiritual development, education, and human, social, and cultural promotion.

In 1988, the Achuar asked Salesian missionaries to start a mission in Wasakentsa. Salesians launched a school and a boarding school for Achuar youth. Today, there are 110 students and 80 interns. There are also 50 Achuar university students who come to study from far away locations. In addition, Salesians have a church that supports 49 Achuar communities in the surrounding area. Nearly 40% of the Achuar population is youth who dream of studying and having a better life.

“Salesians provide social development and educational programs across Ecuador to help poor youth gain an education and the skills for later employment,” said Father Michael Conway, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “The skills they learn ensure they are able to care for themselves and their families while being contributing members of their communities.”

Ecuador is one of the most inequitable societies in the world, according to UNICEF. The richest 20% of the population receives almost 50% of the national income, while the poorest 20% receives only 5%. According to the World Food Program, almost 26% of all children under age 5 have stunted growth, increasing to 31% in rural areas and 47%  in Indigenous communities.



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ANS – Ecuador – 12 Achuar students graduate from Salesian Polytechnic University

Salesian Missions – Ecuador

UNICEF – Ecuador