Italy - Salesians in Palermo empowering young people in difficulty

27 July 2016

(ANS - Palermo) - At 18, under Italian law, the young people resident in care homes must leave the home. Not all of them, however, are ready to face life alone, to ​​get a job, pay rent or rebuild family relationships.

The Family Apartment Group in Palermo was founded to empower those young people when they come to the end of the training course, to enable them to experience a typical family life. The project is a collaboration between Salesians of the SCS / CNOS Federation and the Salesians of the Jesus Adolescent community in Palermo. It is aimed at boys and girls who have come from situations of poverty and social disadvantage, or who are coming from failed adoption or foster care.

"In this house a family atmosphere is created every day" - says Valerio who was resident there for some years. "Don Bosco welcomed us to this house and shows us daily the way of education, a way to inner strength, and the way to responsibility."Ivan says the same: "The Family Apartment Group is making us more independent, starting with small things such as financial management, home care etc. – all the things that will help us in the future to live on our own."

In addition to living together in the apartment, the young people are involved in various activities: training workshops, visits abroad and professional training aimed at a first insertion in the working world. On 31 January 2016, on the feast of St. John Bosco, the first six young people from the Family Apartment Group in Palermo were officially enrolled and welcomed into the Union of Past Pupils of Don Bosco.

The Salesian Fr Giuseppe Cutrupi, Director of the Family Apartment Group, is convinced that the soul of Salesian pedagogy is pastoral charity. He says:  "Educators are invited to act with loving kindness and affection. We must also make it clear to the young people that they are loved. Anyone who knows they are loved will love in turn." This is a challenge that the staff and residents of the Family Apartment Group in Palermo have met together over the years.



ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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