SOUTH AFRICA: Salesian Institute Youth Projects’ Learn to Live School of Skills chosen to present at ‘T4 World Education Week’
(MissionNewswire) The Salesian-run Learn to Live School of Skills project, operated by the Salesian Institute Youth Projects in Cape Town, South Africa, was chosen to present at the “T4 World Education Week” as part of an online event. The showcase gathered 100 schools to share expertise and best practices during World Education Week, which ran from Oct. 5-9.
The schools, chosen from every continent, presented on the theme of “Learning Today” to a worldwide audience of more than 100,000 people. Each school hosted a virtual event to demonstrate how to create change based on their own innovations and successes. World Education Week aims to accelerate progress to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, a commitment designed to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning for all.
Before the event, Father Patrick Naughton, CEO of the Salesian Institute Youth Projects, said, “The management of the Salesian Institute Youth Projects and the pupils and teachers of the Learn to Live School of Skills project are delighted to be included in this incredible global showcase of 100 schools. World Education Week will allow us to learn and innovate together with 100 schools from across the world, all committed to transforming education. With our focus on vocational skills training and project-based learning for youth from marginalized backgrounds, we are proud to be a special school of skills and are looking forward to sharing our practice in October.”
Since 1910, the Salesian Institute Youth Projects has been helping homeless, unemployed and impoverished youth in Cape Town, the second most populous city and legislative capital of South Africa. Salesians provide shelter, education and workforce development services, meeting the basic needs of the youth they serve while helping them break the cycle of poverty.
The Salesian Institute Youth Projects has five main projects—an outreach program, the Center of Hope for homeless youth, the Learn to Live School of Skills education program and two workforce development programs. The projects are managed by a diverse team, some of whom live on the premises to support youth in the hostel and outreach programs.
The Learn to Live School of Skills education program is a school designed specifically for vulnerable and at-risk children and youth. Recognized as an independent school by the Western Cape Education Department, the program provides basic education and skills training for youth at risk who, for a variety of socio-economic reasons, are not able to succeed in mainstream schools. The school offers various levels of education for 13- to 19-year-old students. All students participate in academic classes and skills workshops and receive a cooked meal each day. Demand for the program is high, and 100 youth from the local communities and shelters in and around Cape Town access the program each day.
As part of the Learn to Live School of Skills program, close to 40 youth over the age of 16 attend technical skills training workshops each day where they are taught basic skills in welding, wood and leather craft as well as panel beating. The items they create are sold at local craft markets.
Poverty is extensive in South Africa with more than half the population and more than 63 percent of children living below the poverty line, according to UNICEF. A significant percentage of the population struggles to survive on less than $1 a day. The country is plagued by high crime rates and violence against women and girls, and it has been the hardest hit in the world by the HIV/AIDS crisis.
Salesian missionaries have been working to restore hope in South Africa, particularly among poor youth. From empowering girls and young women to building schools and teaching trade skills, missionaries have a long history of affecting change in the country.
ANS Photo (usage permissions and guidelines must be requested from ANS)
Salesian Missions – South Africa
UNICEF – South Africa