8 Salesian centers to participate in environmental education, reaching more than 5,000 young people
(MissionNewswire) Don Bosco Jugendhilfe Weltweit, the Swiss Salesian Missionary Office, supported an environmental education project for young people. The project, which will be implemented in eight Salesian centers in the south Argentina between 2022 and 2024, is known as “Our Common Home: With Boys, Girls and Youth Towards a Sustainable Environmental Mindset”.
The project will train over 5,000 young people and indirectly impact teachers, site staff and over 400,000 people in local communities. After the training, young people will be encouraged to form teams to continue focusing on the environment in their schools and communities. The objective is to raise awareness, reflection and knowledge of environmental issues.
The project was preceded by a survey carried out in December 2021. All Salesian centers were invited to take part in a three-month preliminary diagnosis and planning phase, during which they received advice from an expert in environment. The project was then launched on the basis of the information and data collected during the survey.
The project will focus on waste management, composting and gardening, communication and networking, as well as promoting good environmental practices and improving internal environmental management systems.
Salesian missionaries around the world have started environmental and sustainable projects. These activities follow Pope Francis’ Laudato Si’ 2020, which highlighted the importance of education and formation that will help young people foster environmental responsibility. The Rector Major, Fr. Ángel Fernández Artime, underlined the importance of concrete initiatives in the protection of the environment.
“This project is among many others launched in Salesian schools and centers,” said Fr Gus Baek, director of Salesian missions, the American development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “It’s important for young people to understand their impact on the environment and the ways that they, their schools, families and communities can work together to make improvements and focus on bigger environmental change.
According to the World Bank, more than a quarter of Argentina’s population lives in conditions of poverty, without formal employment and with poor quality education. The country’s school dropout rate is close to 37% and young people represent a third of the unemployed. Almost 12% of children aged 5 to 17 work instead of going to school and 20% need government assistance. Many face malnutrition, lack of clean water and sewage, and inadequate housing.
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Salesian Missions – Argentina
World Bank – Argentina