Author: Salesian Missions

Publication Date: May 16, 2024

GLOBAL: Salesian Missions launches ‘Loaves & Fishes’ annual fundraiser to support aid shipments

For every dollar donated, Salesian Missions is able to ship $14 worth of critical goods.

NEW ROCHELLE, NY (May 16, 2024) Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco, recently launched its annual “Loaves and Fishes” fundraiser which raises funds to ship life-saving aid to more than 130 countries around the globe. Because the cost of shipping critical aid is far less than its value, donations are multiplied many times over. For every dollar donated, Salesian Missions is able to ship $14 worth of critical goods to its programs. The fundraising appeal runs through the end of June 2024.

Aimed at maximizing the impact of donor-assisted programs and answering the call for emergency aid deliveries, the Salesian Missions Property and Logistics Program is made possible by generous assistance from government and private sector partners. Millions of dollars in U.S. government-issued excess property and corporate in-kind donations are leveraged by an annual award to Salesian Missions from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Ocean Freight Reimbursement Grant for humanitarian aid shipments. This award enables the Salesian Missions Office for International Programs to transport shipments of humanitarian aid and development commodities at low to no cost.

“Salesian Missions maintains several strategic partnerships that donate critical aid like food, water, medicine and housing supplies for Salesian organizations around the globe,” explained Father Michael Conway, director of Salesian Missions. “These partnerships ensure that students in Salesian programs have access to basic necessities and life-saving food aid that provides healthy nutritious meals so youth can focus on their studies, receive an education and thrive in their communities.”

These partnerships are vital to poor youth in communities around the globe. In 2023, more than 1,600 students attending Don Bosco high schools in Ngozi and Buterere, Burundi*, had access to better nutrition thanks to a partnership with Rise Against Hunger. In addition, another shipment was received by the Salesian-run Vincent Foundation in Haiti and then distributed to seven Salesian centers and schools. More than 3,100 youth were impacted by the donation.

Dorcilien Evens, age 14, is one of the students who received the Rise Against Hunger meals in Haiti. He lives with his parents and two sisters. His parents don’t have jobs and food is hard to come by. He worries about his sisters and himself. Evens says he can see the pain in my parents’ eyes because they can’t feed their children.

Evens explained, “When I arrived at the Vincent Foundation, my life changed. I no longer worry about food because I receive a hot dish every day and I can eat until I am full. Sometimes, I can bring something for my sisters. Without this food, students cannot work in the classrooms. We arrive at school without eating, and we have a stomachache or a headache. When we eat something, we are happy and able to follow along with the teacher. When I go home, even if I don’t find anything to eat, I have no worries because at school they already gave me something substantial.”

More than 30,000 Salesian missionaries are dedicated to caring for poor and at-risk youth in programs around the globe. Salesian programs assist poor and disadvantaged youth through education (academic, trade, agriculture) and workforce development initiatives, emergency relief and humanitarian aid, infrastructure support, clean water initiatives, and nutritional and health services.

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