The minors who now live in the “Casa Don Bosco” in Calca previously lived in precarious conditions: in houses without basic services and working in the fields. The Salesians also look after widowed mothers who have many children under their care, as well as fathers who have emigrated to the cities to find work.
The coronavirus has worsened the situation of the population, as now many of the parents have had to leave their children to look for work in mines located in other locations; they are aware that it is a dangerous job, but also that it is the only solution to earn some money and be able to eat. These children, for their part, do not see school as one of their priorities: work in the fields is the priority.
But every child or young person who arrives at Don Bosco's house in Calca receives the opportunity to be educated, to prepare to face the world with the tools of education, and to fulfill their dreams. They have very difficult histories, but the pandemic will not be able to defeat their dream of continuing their studies. They have a large study room and all the necessary equipment. They have school supplies and a computer connected to the Internet so they are in constant communication with their teachers.
“Let's work so the gap with other children their age, who have everything, is reduced,” say the Salesians of Calca.
“Casa Don Bosco” in Calca educates in full fidelity to the Salesian charism and placing minors at the center. They are assigned responsible tasks, such as cleaning and laundry, and others such as taking care of the small chicken coop and farmland.
The determination of these young people from rural areas makes them fighters and constant, even in their studies. In this time of Covid-19, they have a busy agenda. They have never left their home since March to avoid contagion. “We are fulfilling the mandate that their parents gave us: to protect them, accompany them and educate them,” the Salesians explain.
The pandemic cannot overcome the dreams of these young people, because “they are children of Don Bosco, who was a great dreamer,” concludes Franz Reynaldo Quispe Pacheco, educator of the “Casa Don Bosco” in Calca.