PHILIPPINES: Salesians and Porsche Collaborate to Educate and Employ Poor Youth
(MissionNewswire) More than one quarter of the population of the Philippines live in poverty, according to UNICEF. Poverty is most severe and widespread in rural areas where 80 percent of the population–close to 88 million people–make their home. The poorest Filipinos are indigenous populations, small-scale farmers who cultivate land received through agrarian reform, landless workers and fisherman. In addition, poverty rates are higher for women than men.
Illiteracy and high levels of unemployment contribute to the elevated poverty rate. With more than 11 million out-of-school youth in the country and drop-out rates doubling as children reach secondary school, access to education becomes a critical step in breaking the cycle of poverty.
Salesian programs in the Philippines have been educating poor youth and providing them the skills necessary to find and retain employment for many decades. Recently, 16 young men graduated from the Porsche Training and Recruitment Center Asia, as part of a collaborative program between Porsche AG, the Don Bosco Technical Institute in Makati City and PGA Cars.
Students enrolled in the program complete a 10-month basic training course that includes both theoretical and practical training at the Don Bosco Technical Institute where Porsche has set-up and equipped a separate and dedicated training facility. During the program, students undergo advanced Berlitz-administered language lessons in English and Spanish as well as training in customer service.
Twice a year the Institute selects its top 35 students to advance to the Porsche Training and Recruitment Center’s comprehensive nine-month training program with Porsche specialists where students train on official Porsche vehicles using Porsche specialized tools. The program’s curriculum is continuously developing and adapting to the latest innovations and technology. The facility boasts state-of-the-art technical training equipment and advanced training and testing equipment complete with the latest specialized tools.
Graduates of the program become certified Porsche Mechatronics and have employment opportunities awaiting them at several Porsche dealerships in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Latin America.
“Everyone dreams of achieving something great in their lives,” said Robert Coyiuto Jr., chairman of PGA Cars Inc., in his speech at the commencement ceremony. “The Porsche Training and Recruitment Center Asia was created to help underprivileged Filipino youth reach those dreams. Our mission is to provide quality Porsche technical training for youth and ensure that they have jobs that will empower them to achieve more.”
Started in 2008, the training course has graduated 10 classes with 146 graduates becoming certified, 127 of whom are already working for various Porsche Centers worldwide. Many of the graduates are working in dealerships in the Middle East and Latin America but recently there has been an increasing demand from Porsche Centers in the South Pacific and other emerging markets.
“This program and collaboration has been very successful,” says Father Mark Hyde, executive director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “The goal of the program is to assist poor youth in developing the skills and knowledge for lasting employment. We are helping youth fulfill their dreams while meeting Porsche’s need for constant access to a pool of qualified staff.”
Business Mirror- Making dreams come true for the underprivileged youth
Don Bosco Technical Institute – Philippines
UNICEF – Philippines