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Dismantling the Foundations of Child Labor

“These are very deprived households. And the kids are exposed to so much on the streets.”

So says Karen Moutás, director of Canillitas Don Bosco in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic—a country so deeply impoverished that far too many families face homelessness and hunger. Every day, precious girls and boys who should be in school fan out onto the public squares instead—shining shoes, washing cars, and selling fruit.

In the award-winning documentary, Canillitas, you will see children like Edwin, Moises, Cristóbal, and others who just want to earn some extra money so they and their parents can eat. In the process, they become vulnerable to drugs, violence, exploitation and worse.

It doesn’t have to be this way. And you can help.

At Canillitas Don Bosco, our dedicated Salesian missionaries and staff work to eradicate the affliction of child labor so these children can reclaim what’s theirs: their youth, their joy, and their right to an education and a brighter future.

The formula is straightforward and successful—through recreation, counseling, schooling and material support, our missionaries empower kids working on the streets to transcend their circumstances and fulfill their potential to live lives of dignity and purpose.  Thousands of former child laborers have already changed their lives through this program.

Your gift today helps sustain this transformative work in Santo Domingo and around the world.

Thanks in advance for whatever you can give. When we can eradicate the conditions that force kids to choose work over school, we create brighter futures for them, their families, and their communities as a whole.

News & Updates

Colombia: A City of Hope for Vulnerable Kids

Juan David was only six years old when he became his family’s sole provider. His father had died and his mom was struggling to put food on the table for Juan David and his two younger siblings.

Kenya: Forging New Futures Off the Streets

Despite its free educational model, close to 90 percent of children from Kenya’s poorest households fail to complete their basic schooling. Why? Because families barely scraping by on less than $2 per day simply can’t afford the associated fees.

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There are more than 160 million youth forced into child labor worldwide. They work odd jobs like shining shoes, washing car windows, and selling fruit on the dangerous streets, where they are vulnerable to violence, drugs and exploitation. They risk their lives making a few pennies in the hopes of feeding themselves and their families. With your help, we can end this vicious cycle of generational poverty.

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Worldwide, 160+ million youth are engaged in child labor. Many of them work petty jobs on the street to help support their families. In the Dominican Republic & so many other countries, we are helping to end this cycle of generational poverty.

We hope and pray that you support our life-saving work. Your gifts will be used for this program and other similar Salesian programs around the globe that benefit poor and needy youth. Please join us to help make the world a better place.