Author: Salesian Missions

Publication Date: July 11, 2022

Igniting the Flame for Brighter Futures

Millions of youth across India struggle to receive an education—and the stable employment opportunities it provides—due to persistent issues surrounding caste, class and gender. As a result, less than 10 percent of the country’s working-age population has completed a secondary education, which means they lack the competitive knowledge and skills they need to compete in today’s changing job market.

“That’s why access to professional training and workforce development programs are invaluable to youth throughout the country,” explains Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions. “India has the largest population of youth in the world, yet 30 percent of them do not have the opportunities for education, training or employment they need to better their lives.”

At the Don Bosco College of Engineering in Fatorda, Goa, Salesian missionaries provide such opportunities. And two recent graduates illustrate how transformative they can be.

With guidance from one of their professors, Shivdas and Rajat have successfully turned an academic project into a unique start-up business. The duo plan to manufacture a device that can crush recyclable glass bottles and other glass scraps into powder. The resulting sand can then be used for municipal infrastructure, public works, and other construction projects.

Both young men were able to tap into Don Bosco College of Engineering’s Forum for Innovation Incubation Research & Entrepreneurship (FiiRE). This program partners with entities such as the Goa State Innovation Council and Startup India to foster the kinds of entrepreneurial spirit and growth that lead to large-scale employment opportunities. During the last two years alone, the college’s FiiRE program has helped 75 startups get on their feet.

For graduates like Shivdas and Rajat, FiiRE has certainly ignited their future prospects!

Learn more about our work in India.

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