ANS - Honiara)
August 13, 2019
Poverty, illiteracy and unemployment characterize families living near the Ranadi dumps, a suburb east of Honiara. The families who live here deal mainly with collecting materials that can be recycled: they dig in the garbage, select and collect them.
Children very often work with their parents and, clearly, this practice prevents them from regularly attending school and receiving adequate education. Moreover, the hygienic-sanitary conditions in which these minors find themselves are truly precarious and they risk compromising their health.
The "Don Bosco" Technical Institute of Henderson has therefore launched a project to guarantee education to these children and to raise the parents' awareness of the importance of their children's education.
Since March 2019, the Henderson Salesians have in fact started courses to teach children between 4 and 13 to read and write and to refine their calculation skills. The number of students who attend these lessons is between 50 and 70.
Furthermore, courses are organized for older children who want to specialize in welding or manufacturing or, also, in the hotel sector. To date, there have been about 25 applications to participate in these lessons.
The project is also aimed at raising awareness among parents, so that they understand the importance of giving their children a proper education and are motivated to send them to school instead of working in landfills.
In this sense, it becomes important to guarantee an income for families in order to be able to meet the school expenses of the children. For this reason, the "Don Bosco" Technical Institute has devised a program aimed specifically at mothers, which allows them to use the institute's land to grow vegetables, which they can then sell back to the market.
It is important that there is collaboration and support from all, so that the Salesian community of Henderson can continue to carry out this project and reach the largest possible number of vulnerable children and young people.