Liberian Salesians Plan New Technical Program

17 Jan 2019

(ANS – Monrovia, Liberia – January 10) – In Liberia 15 years of civil war were followed by an Ebola epidemic that claimed thousands of victims. These disasters have left Liberia an extremely poor country. The data are merciless: 63.8% of Liberians live below the poverty line; life expectancy is only 63.3 years; a quarter of the population (about 4.6 million) has no access to drinking water; and only 16.9% have adequate health services. Just over half of the inhabitants are illiterate. To foster a positive reaction in the face of many and such problems, the Salesians focus on vocational training.

Back in 1991, in the middle of the civil war, the Salesians built Don Bosco Technical High School in Monrovia, the capital. It is a school that provides primary, middle, and high school education and is currently considered one of the best high schools in the city and in all of Liberia.

Now the Don Bosco’s sons in Liberia want to start a new department of vocational training for electrotechnicians. A course that is open in the afternoon to high school students to offer an integration to their educational path; and in the morning to young workers to help them obtain a certification of their skills and help implement their capacities according to the demands of the world of work.

The initiative includes the renovation of an existing space in the school and its transformation into a workshop, and to open it annually to 90 high school students and 30 uncertified electricians.

The project aims to respond to the needs of the labor market while at the same time aligning itself with the national policy on technical and vocational training. The aim is to position the proposed activities as a model for the future development of its axis of intervention.

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Ed. note: The Salesian mission in Liberia was founded and developed from 1979 by British and American Salesians, notably Frs. John Thompson and Larry Gilmore among many others.