Thus on Friday 13 September there was a meeting attended by the Economers of the Africa Great Lakes Vice Province, in particular of Uganda, Burundi and Rwanda. The Provincial Economer was also present at the meeting, namely Salesian brother Hubert Twagirayezu.
Br Hubert explained that although the meeting focused on several other topics including long-term sustainability, fundraising, good resource management and the importance of planning and development offices, the main emphasis was set on the new procedures to be adopted to create initiatives for the Vice-Province's self-financing.
"This meeting is organized every year by our Vice Province. This year, in particular, we wanted to concentrate on the ways that can conduct us to self-financing, without therefore always depending on external financing," said Br Hubert.
He added that some specific areas have been identified where Salesians can work with regional governments and create partnerships with local NGOs to carry out projects that can bring positive changes among the communities.
On the question of self-financing and Salesian Volunteering, Br Hubert then explained that the objective of self-financing is not to accumulate money in Salesian bank accounts, but to seek funding to continue the work of training young people in the countries of the Vice Province. The ultimate goal of self-financing is to have a well-educated generation, which can also contribute with its own experience in developing their countries of origin.
He noted that the reason why Salesians help the poorest young people is always the same: because young people are, and shall always be, the engines of their countries' development.
The Salesians of Don Bosco have been present in the Great Lakes region for over 50 years and even here they have always been at the service of young people, providing them with educational, social and evangelization programs, starting from Rwanda (1954), and then in Burundi ( 1962) and in Uganda (1985).