VIETNAM: Salesian missionaries open new Don Bosco Bakery – Café in Ho Chi Minh City
(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionaries have launched the new Don Bosco Bakery – Café in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The project is part of the Salesian-run Majcen Center Bistro, Restaurant and Vocation Training Center in the city. The new bakery is located in one of the central districts of Ho Chi Minh City near the British International School where many expatriates live who Salesian missionaries hope will become the bakery’s clientele.
Four Salesian missionaries are working on this new pilot project including two Salesian brothers and two Salesian priests. The new Don Bosco Bakery – Cafe offers youth in Vietnam the opportunity to learn bread and sweet-making skills as well as gain knowledge in management and marketing. The bakery is also another step towards self-sustainability for the vocational training centers with sales from the bakery helping to provide financial backing for educational programs at the center.
Salesian missionaries relied on the expertise of many Vietnamese and foreign experts including a volunteer chef and staff to enhance the quality of training. Salesian missionaries in Ho Chi Minh City have said, “We wish and pray that the new Don Bosco enterprise will help many young people in Vietnam with their integral preparation for life and also that the Salesians will learn how to grow in the self-sustainability of our vocation training institutions.”
The Majcen Center Bistro, Restaurant and Vocation Training Center is named after Slovenian Salesian Father Andrej Majcen and provides poor youth the opportunity to gain hands-on training for restaurant, kitchen and bakery careers. Utilizing the Dual Training System in vocational education from Germany, youth are able to obtain a Culinary Certificate from Germany after three years of theoretical and practical training as well as an internship.
According to the World Bank, close to 14 percent of Vietnam’s population lives in conditions of poverty. The country has seen a drastic reduction of poverty over the last 20 years when the poverty rate was close to 60 percent. Vietnam has also made remarkable progress in education. Primary and secondary enrollments for those in poverty have reached more than 90 percent and 70 percent respectively.
Rising levels of education and diversification into off-farm activities such as working in construction, factories or domestic housework, have also contributed to reducing poverty in the country. Salesian programs give impoverished children and families opportunities that are typically only available to the middle and upper classes so that all people can have hope for a better future.
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World Bank – Vietnam