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ITALY: Don Bosco Youth Burgh launches two new innovative educational projects

(MissionNewswire) In 2018, the Don Bosco Youth Burgh will celebrate 70 years since its foundation in the eastern districts of Rome. During its history, the Don Bosco Youth Burgh has assisted youth through the many social, cultural and technological changes that have radically altered these past few decades. The needs of youth in the region have changed throughout the organization’s history and so Don Bosco Youth Burgh is constantly undergoing transformation.

During this 70th anniversary new structural changes to buildings will be made in order to respond effectively to the new needs of young people. Salesian programs help youth who are unable to attend school and others who drop out to work at the few jobs available to them. A growing number of children work as laborers on farms and others have turned to the sex trade to help support their families. Those in poverty often live without adequate shelter, hot water, regular meals and health care.

According to UNICEF, a growing number of youth are living away from their families in temporary shelters and within government and charity programs because of inadequate support from or neglect by their families. Salesian programs work to combat these challenges by providing shelter, nutrition, education and workforce development services for youth in need.

In recent months, the Don Bosco Youth Burgh has launched two new programs—the semi-residential community in the “Rimettere le Ali” area and a new Food and Restaurant Industry Vocational Training Center to prepare youth for employment opportunities. In the wake of these new additions, Salesian missionaries with Don Bosco Youth Burgh are thinking about how to better accommodate youth in the spaces needed to carry out these educational activities.

Some of these changes being considered include an enclosed structure to accommodate all of the sports activities, which are currently located among the area’s various gyms. Salesian missionaries are also considering a redevelopment of the various spaces of the burgh to offer families new spaces for increasing artistic activities such as music and theater.

“Salesian missionaries across the globe are constantly working to update and change programming to best meet the needs of youth they serve,” says Father Mark Hyde, executive director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “Having the space to launch and effectively provide these innovative and creative projects that help youth better express themselves are essential.”

Across the country, Salesian missionaries are continuing to innovate to meet the needs of local communities. Several Salesian programs in Italy have come together with the support of UNICEF to launch the “La Perla, Starting over from the streets” project. The new initiative aims to address the needs of unaccompanied foreign minors who are at risk on the streets of Rome. The project was first presented in May 2017 during a round table discussion titled “In and Out: Beyond hardship to start flying again.” Through the course of the initiative Salesian missionaries and staff are providing outreach to welcome unaccompanied minors, who often have no one else to care for them, and assist them in getting the services they need.

The project brings together the Sacred Heart Salesian Hospice, the Salesian Federation for Social Work, the Naturalmente Association, the Missionaries of the Risen Christ and the Borgo Ragazzi Don Bosco. It is financed by UNICEF.



ANS – Italy – Seventy Years of Borgo Ragazzi Don Bosco

MissionNewswire ITALY: New Salesian Initiative Provides Assistance to Unaccompanied Foreign Minors in Rome

UNICEF – Italy Poverty

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