Egypt

According to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), 26 percent of Egypt’s population lives in poverty, while 49 percent of those living in Upper Egypt cannot provide for their basic needs of food and shelter.

Egypt’s unemployment rate has reached 13.2 percent and that number almost doubles for women. Egypt has been experiencing a rise in poverty and food insecurity for the past three years, according to reports released by the United Nations food agency and its partners.

Salesian-run educational and social development services give hope to youth and their families living in poverty throughout the country.

More Missions In Egypt

Provide technical & vocational training

Salesian missionaries operate the Don Bosco Industrial Technical Institute, a center of excellence located in Cairo. Every year, the institute trains youth as industrial experts, prepares them to enter the workforce and helps the country maintain a high level of industrial development.

Students at the Don Bosco Industrial Technical Institute have recently been working on the development of two innovative prototypes to implement solar power. This project was carried out in cooperation with AFD (Agence Française de Développement), IECD (Institut Européen de Coopération et de Développement) and Schneider Egypt in order to provide students with the tools and skills needed to undertake this project.

Students are working on developing a pump, which will use the energy generated by the sun through panels without the use of batteries. A second project is to develop ideas for how to provide a small house with solar energy, in addition to using the national power grid, depending on the availability of the sun.

“The idea of ​​the project is to teach students, the next generation of engineers, to be familiar with new technologies for the use of solar energy,” said an Egyptian manager of Schneider.

Another program, the Salesian House, was founded in Alexandria in 1896 by Father Rua to provide education to the many Italian migrants who lived there. Today, the Don Bosco School in Alexandria educates more than 900 students, mostly Muslim, in classes ranging from primary school to vocational training. The courtyards and playgrounds of the Salesian House are filled with students after school who connect with their peers in a safe and supportive environment. The institute is recognized, and partially funded, by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Provide youth centers & safe activities

Salesian missionaries in the community of Zeitoun, within the city of Cairo, offer an oratory and parish. The programs primarily serve young Egyptians and South Sudanese who are refugees in the country. Father Dany Kerio, rector of the Salesian community, notes that the oratory playground is a meeting place of culture and people.

The Salesian community provides education and social development services for youth and their families living in poverty in the region. Youth are able to access the Salesian programs and gain assistance with homework, connect with their peers, and be connected with adults who provide mentorship and support in their lives. The community is also serving many South Sudanese refugees who have escaped violence and conflict in their home country. But many are faced with racial discrimination and challenges in Egypt. Salesian missionaries work to mitigate these difficulties through programs aimed at helping refugees integrate into their new communities.

Respond to refugee needs

Salesian missionaries continued offering training to assist refugees in gaining the skills needed for employment or self-employment in Egypt through the Sunrise Project for Cairo’s Urban Refugees and Vulnerable Hosts. The project is possible thanks to funding from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM) through a Salesian technical and vocational training center in Cairo.

The project was first funded through Salesian Missions in 2014. To date, the project has improved the livelihoods and quality of life of more than 3,000 Sub-Saharan African, Yemeni and Syrian refugees and vulnerable Egyptians.

The Sunrise Project is popular among refugees with more than 2,000 applicants trying for the limited number of trainee openings. From the over 700 who were accepted and who completed baseline assessments, more than 500 received technical and vocational training. This led to 426 successful graduates from September 2020 to September 2021. In addition, 65 trainees received a seed grant and one-on-one mentoring, and 16 microentrepreneurs and past alumni received small business development grants.

The Sunrise Project also provides life skills training, health awareness, entrepreneurship literacy workshops, job panels, seed grants, and violence prevention training to help refugees build the skills needed to succeed in the workplace and adjust to their new urban environments. One of the great successes of the project is the additional social services, including transportation vouchers for travel to and from courses, fully funded for participants. Those engaged in the training are also provided gender-specific hygiene kits and vouchers to purchase groceries and other essentials from a local store. This helps to ensure that basic needs like nutrition are met.

Each participant also receives a primary care checkup and eye exam with a doctor who comes to the school. Some medicine prescriptions are included as are referrals for secondary care as needed.

Provide clean, safe water

Don Bosco Technical Institute in Cairo has new bathrooms and access to clean, fresh water thanks to funding from Salesian Missions “Clean Water Initiative.” Every year, Don Bosco Technical Institute welcomes more than 4,000 people who regularly attend classes and other activities, and they will now benefit from clean water access and proper sanitation.

With Salesian Missions funding, Don Bosco Technical Institute improved and renovated the two bathrooms and installed two safe drinking water supplies. This allowed the school to provide sustainable access to safe water and basic sanitation services for both male and female students.

The project entailed dismantling the old facilities and upgrading both the plumbing and electrical systems, including the use of LED lighting which will provide a drastic reduction in energy costs and maintenance. Walls were plastered and a new concrete slab was poured. Five new toilets were provided in each bathroom in addition to new sinks. The school also hung posters above the sinks to remind students to practice good hygiene.

Don Bosco Technical Institute also purchased and installed two steel 240-liter water coolers, each of them with three taps. One cooler will be placed inside the locker room and the other in the courtyard so students have water access during and after physical education sessions and during recreation.

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Brighter Futures are Dawning in Egypt

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More than 4,000 people who regularly attend classes and other activities will benefit from clean water access and proper sanitation. NEW ROCHELLE, NY (July 31, 2020) Don Bosco Technical Institute in Cairo, Egypt, has new bathrooms

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