ITALY: Positions open for youth volunteers
Salesians for Social has 1,250 Universal Civil Service placements available for youth volunteers in 2021
(MissionNewswire) Salesians for Social, which coordinates the Universal Civil Service in Italy, will engage 1,250 youth between the ages of 18 and 29 in 2021 for volunteer positions in Italy and programs in Spain, France and Albania. This is the highest number of volunteers the Salesians will ever place for Universal Civil Service projects. In 2020, many of the placements were online and had to adapt to finding new ways to provide services that were originally intended in-person. This required flexibility within placements that will carry over to 2021.
For some projects, volunteer service will take place remotely while volunteers are at home. In other projects, a volunteer will work at the project’s original site or in another place where work can be done safely thanks to agreements with local governmental bodies and organizations.
Youth will be engaged in social welfare and educational activities that allow them to give back to local communities, gaining personal growth and maturation. Volunteers services include supporting the elderly, social assistance, educational support, digital literacy, creation of educational and cultural projects, food support, donation management and more.
“Volunteering in the coming months will help Italy to restart and not only prepare older youth volunteers for the future but give them an opportunity to help others prepare through education of younger youth and children,” explained Father Roberto Dal Molin, president of Salesians for Social.
In Italy, young people who are unemployed and not in school or training programs represent 20 percent of the population. Vocational training is an educational path that serves as a highly effective bridge between school and work.
Italy, Europe’s third-largest economy, has close to 2 million children living in poverty, according to UNICEF. The poverty rate has risen in the wake of Europe’s economic crisis. Unemployment is at its highest level since the late 1970s with the overall jobless rate at 12.5 percent and youth unemployment as high as 41 percent.
Salesian programs across Italy 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.
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Salesian Missions – Italy
UNICEF – Italy Poverty