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INDIA: The Salesian-run Institute for Culture and Rural Development (I-CARD) holds workshop for 75 Mising indigenous youth

(MissionNewswire) In early April, 75 young Mising indigenous youth took part in a training course facilitated by the Institute for Culture and Rural Development (I-CARD), which was founded and is directed by Salesian Father K.A. Thomas. Youth from the districts of Golaghat, Sivasagar, Majuli, Dibrugarh, Charaideo, Lakhimpur and Dhemaji, in the Indian state of Assam attended the three-day event.

The first session was led by two officials of the Gas Authority of India who talked to the children about having a positive outlook on life, to listen to their inner life and to cultivate spirituality. The next day the group attended the Agricultural University of Assam for a lesson and laboratory session on raising pigs. The effectiveness and value of integrated breeding of pigs, fish and poultry was emphasized.

In the afternoon, at the I-CARD facilities, the students continued their lesson on pig breeding. Fr. Thomas was also able to illustrate the Japanese technique “Bokashi” used at the institute’s farm, which combines productivity and respect for nature, while also improving the quality of the air.

On the third day, the students worked on projects within the I-CARD campus. The last two sessions focused on the final technical training in pig breeding. Students discovered how to prevent diseases among pigs and what drugs to give them. They also learned valuable information about maintaining their own health and hygiene.

During the last session of the program, Fr. Thomas talked to the students about domestic violence and insisted that young people should proceed with courage and determination to stop these abuses and give dignity to all members of their tribes. At the end, the students were awarded their graduate certificates.

“Salesian missionaries have a long history of helping poor youth in India including indigenous youth,” says Father Mark Hyde, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “From providing education and technical training that prepares youth for employment to art and cultural events, Salesian missionaries focus on creating opportunities for their students to become well-rounded citizens and future leaders in their communities.”

Access to professional training and workforce development services is highly valued by youth in India. The country, which is home to 1.34 billion people (18 percent of the world’s population), will have overtaken China as the world’s most populous country by 2024, according to the World Economic Forum. While India has the world’s largest youth population, it has yet to capitalize on this, leaving some 30 percent of its population without employment, education or training.

India has the world’s fourth largest economy but more than 22 percent of the country lives in poverty. About 31 percent of the world’s multidimensionally poor children live in India, according to a new report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative. A multidimensionally poor child is one who lacks at least one-third of 10 indicators, grouped into three dimensions of poverty: health, education and standard of living.



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India – Mising indigenous youths receive comprehensive formation

World Bank – India