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TIMOR-LESTE: Youth access nutrition through partnership with Salesian Missions and Rise Against Hunger

Youth in Salesian programs in Timor-Leste

Don Bosco Foundation launches new nutrition project in 28 centers

Youth in Salesian programs in Timor-Leste.

TIMOR-LESTE

(MissionNewswire) Youth in Salesian programs in Timor-Leste have access to better nutrition through a new year-long project that has launched thanks to a partnership with the Don Bosco Foundation Timor-Leste; Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco; and Rise Against Hunger, an international humanitarian organization growing a global movement to end hunger. The nutrition project, called “Rewrite the Future,” began in January and will run through December 2024.

“Rise Against Hunger is honored to work alongside Salesian Missions in Timor-Leste,” said Andrew Sullivan, Rise Against Hunger’s director of program management. “By leveraging our respective strengths and empowering the local community, we are working to end hunger together. This project is meeting immediate nutritional needs, while building in locally led sustainable solutions, to ensure people in the country have the long-term nourishment they need to live a healthy life. Rise Against Hunger supports the nutrition project by supplying meals, cash grants and technical capacity building for local procurement of food to Salesian Missions to address this critical issue.”

The project will provide healthy food to close to 2,000 disadvantaged youth in 28 centers across eight municipalities. Salesians will distribute maize, rice, corn, eggs, chicken, vegetables, potatoes, kidney beans/soya beans, cooking oil, sugar, salt, noodles and canned fish.

“This project provides an opportunity for poor and disadvantaged youth in Salesian centers to access healthy nutrition, and we appreciate Rise Against Hunger’s support in this endeavor,” said Father Michael Conway, director of Salesian Missions. “The goal is to improve the health of youth in our programs and support them in overcoming malnutrition. Further, youth will be supported during their education as they acquire essential job skills that will allow them to become self-sufficient.”

The project will also introduce new activities meant to support the feeding program and build sustainability at six pilot centers near Dili. The pilot program will provide kitchen garden training, hand-washing and hygiene initiatives, and malnutrition management activities.

Salesians started the first quarter of the project by preparing the meal plans with a nutritionist while holding training for staff. Food was also purchased, prepared and delivered to the 28 centers, which included schools, youth centers and orphanages. Salesians will be tracking health markers and school performance of the students at the six pilot centers as the project continues.

Salesian missionaries and Salesian sisters living and working in Timor-Leste operate educational programs, three orphanages for poor and homeless youth, and a medical clinic. In the wake of the devastating war that claimed countless lives, decimated entire communities and resulted in living conditions that are among the worst in the world, the Salesian community has been providing programs to help residents rebuild. Efforts are focused on helping poor youth through education and providing new opportunities for the future.

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Sources:

Photo courtesy of Salesian Missions (contact for usage permissions)

Rise Against Hunger

Salesians of Don Bosco Indonesia-Timor Leste

Salesian Missions – Timor-Leste

World Bank – East Timor/Timor-Leste

 

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