VIETNAM: Theology students advance studies with donated books
Campus library open to members of other religious congregations in area.
NEW ROCHELLE, NY (June 6, 2023) Top of Form The Salesian School of Theology, located in Xuan Hiep, Thu Duc District of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, received a pallet of books in 2022 thanks to a donation secured by Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. There are 50 students who attend the theology program. The library on the campus is not only for these students, but also for members of other religious congregations in the area.
“We are grateful to our donors who have ensured Salesian seminary students had access to the books they need for their studies,” said Father Timothy Ploch, interim director of Salesian Missions. “The cost of materials is often too much for some Salesian programs so donors who can help supplement these items contribute to the overall quality education that is the Salesian standard. The Salesians in Vietnam were happy with the books and appreciated the support.”
Salesian schools, services and programs throughout Vietnam are helping to break the cycle of poverty while giving many young people hope for a more positive and productive future. Salesian vocational and technical schools equip students with the skills they need to compete in the local labor market by offering courses that lead to employment in construction, hotel management, electrical and mechanical engineering, computer science, and other fields. Many Salesian students are school dropouts seeking a second chance.
According to the World Bank, close to 14% of Vietnam’s population lives in conditions of poverty. The country has seen a drastic reduction of poverty over the last 20 years when the poverty rate was close to 60%. Vietnam has also made remarkable progress in education. Primary and secondary enrollments for those in poverty have reached more than 90% and 70% respectively.
Rising levels of education and diversification into off-farm activities such as working in construction, factories or domestic housework have also contributed to reducing poverty in the country. Salesian programs give impoverished children and families opportunities that are typically only available to the middle and upper classes so that all people can have hope for a better future.
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