Projects Needing Assistance
Bahay Pag-asa is a refuge for incarcerated youth
La Salle International supports the work of Bahay Pag-asa, in Dasmarinas, Philippines, a residential treatment facility for court adjudicated youth offenders. Ordinarily, these youth would be retained in the public jails which makes no separation of youth from adults; average cell populations can be from 100-140 individuals. Bahay Pag-asa (House of Hope) provides residencial educational programs and training to allow juvenile offenders to begin their lives again with marketable skills.
South Sudan: Moving Forward Amid Crisis
To assist in the building of South Sudan’s human capacity, La Salle International has been supporting the efforts of Solidarity with South Sudan, which is successfully offering educational, health and pastoral services. Solidarity with South Sudan currently has operational facilities in Juba, Wau, Malakal, Riimenze and Yambio, and satellite offerings in Leer, Nzara, Kosti, Renk and Bentieu. The staff, largely consists of consecrated religious male and females who typically have had previous missionary experience and who are experts in their field. The Solidarity teachers at the Catholic Health Training Institute (CHTI) in Wau are board certified and fully credentialed Medical Doctors (MD) and Registered Nurse (RN) trainers.
The organization’s efforts have been threatened, however, by the ongoing conflict in South Sudan. As a result of the war, many people are in need of humanitarian assistance. (See the numbers below.) South Sudan erupted into violence 15 December 2013 when rebels loyal to the ousted Vice President Riek Machar initiated military action in the country. Since then, militia members loyal to Machar have battled government forces. Attempts at reconciliation by the African Union and others have been unsuccessful, so conflicts rage.
Solidarity with South Sudan strives to create self-sustainable teacher training and health-care institutes which eventually will be run by the Sudanese themselves. Solidarity with South Sudan does not discriminate with regards to tribal affiliation, geographic origin, religion, or sexual orientation. All programs operate under a collaborative memorandum of understanding with the appropriate national certifying authorities such as the Government of South Sudan Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and Ministry of Health. Contributions in support of this challenging and important work can be made through this website (press the “Support our work” button on the top right.)
Situation Summary Update as of 2 March 2015
- In Bentiu Protection of Civialians site, 12,018 children were screened for malnutrition and a proxy global acute malnutrition rate of 12.5% was determined. Although this is still unacceptable, it is less than the previous rate of %18.8.
- An initial rapid needs assessment is underway iun Minni, Unity State.
- For the first time in neary a year and a half, a humanitarian convoy has arrived in Maban, Upper Nile State, from Juba.
4.1 Million People to be reached with humanitarian aid
1.5 Million People displaced internally by violence
2.5 Million People facing crisis/emergency levels of food insecurity Jan-Mar 2015
[Photo Courtesy of Reuters]
Haiti: School for Children and Health Center for Mothers
International support fund has financed construction and free-tuition at a new school in Port au Prince. The school is completed, but the associated health clinic for parents and children needs assistance. Your donations will help the De La Salle Brothers in Haiti provide health education and care for women and infants in Haiti. Please consider the following gifts:
$ 20.00 Nutrition educational materials for mothers
$ 100.00 Vegetable garden seeds
$ 150.00 One month’s medical training for outreach volunteers
$ 30.00 Sponsor a woman to attend a sewing workshop
$ 100.00 Stethescope and other medical kit items for outreach volunteers
India: Boys’ Village provides a home for street children
Boys’ Village is a residential program for 87 orphan, abandonded and destitute boys aged 6-12 who are economically poor and who have shown poor performance in academics. It costs Rs. 1,200 per boy per month to operate the facility ($30 per boy per month).
The boys live in several different dorms which are managed by the boys themselves. They have regular activities on the weekend; during the week, they spend most of their daytime in school and their evenings in supervised study. All of these youth are individuals who otherwise would be out on the street. As such, the village cannot require students to pay tuition – all students are 100% scholarship need students.
India: Reaching The Unreached
Beginning in 1974 with a small program for boys, Reaching the Unreached (RTU) has evolved over the years into a comprehensive program to serve marginal populations in India. RTU is a comprehensive series of programs which offer a variety of services including, but not limited to: KinderCare, primary school education, home building (and associated construction trades for the homes which are pre-fabricated on the premises), textile work (see photo), dispensary and a facility for elderly health care and meals for the elderly who can’t cook for themselves.
The clinic which carefully monitors AIDS patients and leprosy affected individuals also provides after-natal training for mothers and diagnoses/treats about 160 people a day for a variety of illnesses. In the afternoon, the clinic becomes mobile and visits nearby villages whose people cannot make the travel to the center for health care. Additionally, the clinic serves about 400 elderly people who are too feeble to come to the clinic. The clinic also trains medical workers who animate local health communities by providing education in proper lifestyles and can make referrals to the clinic when necessary; these individuals dispense OTC medications when necessary.
Approximately 950 orphaned or parent-separated children are incorporated into a “village-like” program where 6-8 youth are housed with single mothers until they can live in a hostel. About 500 children stay with their house-mothers until 12 or 13 and then live in a hostel until they are 17. Due to space limitations, the program provides for additional children to be placed in homes in the area and payment is made for the homes to house the children on a per diem basis. RTU has 6 hostels which provide homes for 250 adolescents. A special house is kept for AIDS victims and a special child care unit has been set up to work with them. Of the 950 kids served through the program, about 10% are HIV+. HIV assistance (training, counselling, medications) is given to families.
A large cafeteria provides for the children’s needs and a hot mid-day meal is provides for approximately 2,000 whom live and work at the center; 750 additional meals are prepared for breakfast and dinner.
Part of the RTU program is also to build houses for the less fortunate. Using a production facility built on the campus, and a stardard for pre-fabrication, approximately 7,500 houses have been built (17’ x 17’) from cement bricks. Houses cost Rs 60,000 (about $1,500 USD) apiece to build.
A RTU mobile educational laboratory visits schools whose budget does not afford science lab equipment; this mobile unit stops and the schools and allows students to conduct experiments inside the unit.
There is a large volunteer group who assist with operations and approximately 400 people are employed by RTU, thereby providing significant assistance to the local poor area.
Ivory Coast: Abobo Project Welcomes Destitute Youth
This project focuses on street children between 8 and 15 years of age who have be disassociated from their families. The children are welcomed from the local area where they are found running free in the streets, often getting into trouble and running drugs. The area is a very poor area with garbage in the streets and poor shanties for the local people.
The Abobo campus consists of a series of small dormitories for 8 children and a counselor in which each student is given his own bed and closet. The children are typically here for about 3 years before they are placed back into their own homes, or homes of relatives.
The facility is set up in a village like arrangement, with very nice dormitories surrounding a central meeting area. The grounds have facilities for soccer and other sports; a library is currently being constructed which will replace the other, smaller and dysfunctional library on campus.
The school has approximately 50 street children. Efforts are made to associate them with the families and, where possible, to place them in the public school system. When this is not possible, tutoring of the students occurs on campus.
The students are responsible for the maintenance of the property which includes helping to serve the food, keeping the floors and tables clean, working in the garden, etc. Medical attention is given to the students through the services of a nearby religious congregation of Roman Catholic sisters who are involved in medical ministries.
Burkina Faso: CLIMA Provides Skills to Agricultural Families
Located in Beregadougou, Burkina Faso, Project CLIMA is a successful agricultural training center for young families. The goal of the project is to train 24 families of farmers (with wives and children) how to farm productively, utilize the most modern techniques, and become financially self-sufficient. The program admits married couples less than 30 years of age who have farms of their own and who wish to spend two years training of agricultural training at the CLIMA. This agricultural project is modeled on a successful TAMI Project in northern Togo. CLIMA involves 60 hectares of land on the main farm and 100 hectares at a satellite location 12 km away.
There are three workshops on the property: carpentry, mechanics, and clothing (sewing). The property also has a stable for 6 steer, a chicken coup, 2 classrooms, living space for teachers, a store room, and a garage for farm equipment. A former set of aquaculture ponds exist on the property and some of them are being used currently for rice production. Both men and women receive instruction in how to manage a farm.
Because the families come with their children, there is need to have a child care center for the youngsters. Mothers assist with this and keep the kids busy inside with some instruction and outside playing on the grounds. At this point, there are 34 children on the grounds; only four go to school at the public school. Two full time child care women oversee this child care center.
IALU: Surrounding the world with university and professional education
The International Association of La Sallian Universities (IALU) is a consortium of higher educational institutions around the world. The 74 member institutions provide a variety of undergraduate, graduate and professional (law, medicine, engineering) degrees and programs. Each of the institutions has functional specialities which respond to the needs of the local area; all of them have quality undergraduate education. In IALU schools, teaching is “job one” so all of the professors are primarily evaluated on their capabilities in the classroom.
University education in the IALU system extends throughout 5 continents. Collaborative work among the universities is common. As such, students in one university can elect to take classes or study abroad at other universities, and through this linkage of professional talent and outstanding teaching, the consortium makes up one of the most powerful higher educational networks in the world.
Students from less developed countries are assisted by scholarships from donors who understand the importance of a global education. These generous donors seek to provide these students with access to this opportunity which is so professionally rewarding and personally transformative.
Colombia: Project Utopia Builds Agricultural Leadership
Through Universidad De La Salle in Colombia, “Project Utopia” engages high school alumni from Colombian rural areas affected by violence and poverty. Students become Agricultural Engineers through a creative “hands on” program in which best practices are taught in the field by knowledgeable instructors. Besides learning farming operations, students become leaders for social and political transformation in field production
entrepreneurship at their places of origin.
Students come from deep Colombia – where employment opportunities are scarce, poverty is common, and where continual pressure is exerted from armed groups to join their ranks. They are relocated to safety and security of the campus of Universidad De La Salle. There, they recover faith and hope in themselves. The program is designed to build their self-esteem, to awaken their goodness and solidarity, and give them an outstanding technical and scientific education. Ultimately, they will be the professionals which contribute positively to the reconstruction of a new country.
The Project’s enormous challenges range from dealing with students’ psychological
and social conditions to the urgency of achieving national and international funding
which can sustain the program.
The specific objectives of the program are:
- To provide students with agricultural training for sustainable agricultural conversion and preservation of the biodiversity of the Colombian Amazorinoquia and other rural areas.
- To create and transfer knowledge in order to enable the improvement of economic, social and nutritional conditions of the rural Colombian.
- To promote agricultural production around associations and cooperatives of producers to achieve field technical production.
- To train leaders for social and political action to promote democratic values and to foster the reconstruction of the social fabric.
For more information about this program which builds human capacity in Colombia’s youth, click here.
Haiti: Primary and secondary school serves remote island population
Turtle Island (Ile de la Tortue) lies off the northern coast of Port-au-Paix, Haiti where small fishing and subsistence level farmers live on a year-round basis. Serving the needs of young children on this island, the Communauté Notre-Dame-des-Palmistes manages a secondary school and a primary school. The physical structures of the school have been provided by NGO donors such as the Lasallian PROYDE and ongoing operational support of the school requires continued assistance above the tuition base which cannot be met by most of the students. In other than financial ways, the local community of Haitians are very supportive of the school and frequently use the area for activities and gatherings, in addition to the educational work which is provided to the villagers regardless of one’s ability to pay tuition.