BURUNDI: Students at Lycée Don Bosco have access to better nutrition thanks to Salesian Missions partnership with Rise Against Hunger
Rice-meal shipments from Rise Against Hunger improved the lives and health for students, enabling them to better focus on their studies.
NEW ROCHELLE, NY (Dec. 18, 2019) More than 1,200 students attending Lycée Don Bosco, located in Bujumbura, Burundi, had access to better nutrition in the second quarter of 2019 thanks to a partnership between Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco, and Rise Against Hunger, an international relief organization that provides food and life-changing aid to the world’s most vulnerable.
Many of the students attending the school come from poor families who barely have enough to eat once a day. A student who comes to school on an empty stomach will have trouble focusing on lessons. The rice-meals are provided to students during school hours so they have the strength and energy to focus on their studies, pay attention and gain the skills needed for later employment.
Leadership at Lycée Don Bosco is pleased with the donation because of its positive impact for students and teachers. Nteturuye Liberate, vice principal and dean of students, said, “Rise Against Hunger meals help the whole community including students, staff and other workers. The rice has a good taste and is easy to cook. Now students are better able to follow their lessons.”
Rise Against Hunger partners with Salesian Missions, which works to identify needs and coordinate delivery of 40-foot shipping containers full of meals and supplemented with additional supplies when available. The partnership was developed in 2011 and since that time shipments have been successfully delivered to countries around the globe. The meals and life-saving aid have helped to nourish poor youth at Salesian schools and programs and care for those in need of emergency aid during times of war, natural disasters and health crises.
“The partnership with Rise Against Hunger allows Salesian Missions to expand its services for youth in need,” says Father Mark Hyde, director of Salesian Missions. “Operating feeding programs and providing other life-changing supplies for youth is integral to the success of our students and their ability to gain an education.”
Burundi, located in the heart of the African Great Lakes region, has seen more than a decade of violence and conflict which has contributed to widespread poverty, according to UNICEF. Burundi ranks 185 out of 189 countries on the 2017 UN Human Development Index and close to 70 percent of its residents live below the poverty line.
Children are some of the most severely affected by the country’s rampant poverty. Fifty-three percent of children under the age of 5 suffer from growth stunting caused by inadequate food, low-quality diet, poor infant feeding practices, poor household management of childhood diseases and the general decline of the country’s health system.
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