Ecuador - The earthquake destroyed many lives. Today a new start with new school buildings

08 May 2018

(ANS - Manta) - On 16 April 2016, a powerful earthquake shook Ecuador's coastal areas. The result was tragic: 700 dead, over 6,000 injured and almost 30,000 people homeless. Among the Salesian centers, the one in Manta, near the epicenter of the earthquake, was the hardest hit. The parish church was destroyed, the old building of the institute had to be completely demolished, while the Salesian house for retreats was damaged.

In the presence of the Salesian authorities of the country, of the civil and ecclesiastical authorities of the city of Manta, the inauguration of the new buildings,  built after the earthquake, took place at the end of April.

The inauguration ceremony was attended by Jorge Zambrano, mayor of the Decentralized Autonomous Government of Manta, members of the Cantonal Council, the authorities of the Department of Education, the directors of the Salesian houses, Dr Carlos Bergmann, Vice President of the National Assembly, Salesian Past Pupils, students and their families.

The buildings that were inaugurated are part of the first phase of the reconstruction of the Educational Center, which includes: a building for the classrooms, a building for the laboratories of Physics, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry and 3 classes for Computer Science, the central courtyard, the refectory , a pitch with synthetic grass and a multipurpose field. For the second phase the construction of an administrative building, the auditorium and a gym is planned.

The investments necessary for the reconstruction of this center were collected by private contributions, the Salesian Province of Ecuador and the Salesian community of Manta.

The Salesians have been serving the children and youth of Manta for over 70 years. In 1942 the first group of Salesians arrived in the city, and was led by the director, Fr Telmo Andrade. Two years later, Fr Julio María Haro was sent to found a school and take care of a parish. The first Salesians, knowing that only education offers a future for young people, in 1944 began the construction of what would become the "Salesian Educational Unit of San José".

The center includes a school attended by about 1350 students, the parish "Our Lady of the Rosary", the festive oratory, the retreat house "Santa Maria de Crucita" and the temple dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul.


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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