MEXICO: New Salesian Medical Clinic Opens, Serves Youth and Neighboring Communities
(MissionNewswire) In early December 2012, a new medical clinic opened as part of a Salesian-run program in Morelia. The clinic was named after Father Alberto Durán Cabrales, rector of the Antonio de Mendoza community in Morelia. Salesian Brother Víctor López Cisneros is responsible for the clinic’s ongoing operation.
Each week, close to 600 youth access the Salesian Oratory (youth center) at Morelia. Here, young people are educated and given access to social services. The new clinic will provide health services for these youth as well as those in the neighboring villages and districts.
The clinic was made possible by the commitment, perseverance and help of the youth center students’ parents, health professionals and doctors. All worked together with the Salesians in Morelia to enhance the offerings of the Oratory as well as the social services in the community.
“The health of the young people we serve is very important to us,” says Father Mark Hyde, executive director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “The work we do goes beyond education. We serve the whole child by making sure the basic needs of health and nutrition are met in addition to other social service needs.”
According to the World Bank, there are 52 million people living in poverty in Mexico, approximately 45 percent of the country’s population. The Salesians in Mexicoprimarily direct their efforts toward the country’s at-risk youth, including girls and young mothers who face severe dangers on the streets.
Innovative programs are preventing poor children from dropping out of school and are providing important opportunities to keep them on the right track. At-risk youth take part in programs that integrate education, social activities and technical training. The goal is to guide youth back into mainstream education so that they can reach their full potential.
Caring for the sick and providing healthcare for youth is nothing new for the Salesians. There are roughly 216 Salesian clinics and hospitals located around the globe, predominantly in rural areas. Leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease, has been a concern of the Salesians for more than 100 years. Salesian leper hospitals and leprosy control programs can be found in Brazil, Colombia, India, Thailand, Macau and a number of nations in Africa. HIV/AIDS prevention programs are also part of the Salesian work in Africa. In many of the countries with Salesian programs, dental programs and other necessary health services can be found as well.
Salesian Missions – Mexico
World Bank – Mexico