On the sidelines of the celebration, the managers of the publishing house spoke about the current situation that the institution is going through due to the pandemic, and how they have reinvented themselves to strengthen their work in the service of education, without stopping their activities for a single moment.
The origins of this work date back to 1920 when the Italian Salesian missionary Fr Luigi Natale Strazzieri, LNS, elaborated a text called "History of Ecuador", a book with an educational approach that was delivered to the "Cristoforo Colombo" school in Guayaquil and which was also adopted by several other religious orders.
Over time, the publisher's attention not only focused on books, but also on the production of audiovisual material, which led to the creation of "Audiovisuales Don Bosco" (ADB) and the transition from a publishing house that produced texts to a publishing house that provided educational services.
It was not easy for the EDB to produce books in the educational field, because about 64 texts are needed to generate a collection for students from the first year of Basic General Education to the third year of the Unified General Baccalaureate. This implies great team work and a strong commitment on the part of the professionals involved, who are currently about 150 in the different areas.
In 2019, before the pandemic, about 900,000 texts were printed for students from Salesian schools and other educational institutions. Despite the complications of 2020, the publishing house developed over 200 editorial projects last year including pastoral publications, literature for children and young people, the educational division, digital education, audiovisual projects ... And it won 70% of the government tenders, which allows them to continue to disseminate good books, both printed and digital, to students across the country.
To adapt to the current market, EDB also implemented an online store, quickly switching to the digital book. N+e was worth it: “If we hadn't made that leap we would have failed, and it would have been a real shame if the pandemic had put an end to 100 years of history,” comments Marcelo Mejía, its current manager.
The centenary celebration started with a cultural event in 2020 and an entire activity plan was planned; however, the pandemic forced events to be suspended.
Among the institutional challenges today are: reproducing the first book on the history of Ecuador and, above all, continuing the work in favor of education and the good press. This work has, in fact, two reasons for being: the first is to provide a quality product to Ecuadorian children, teenagers and young people, and the second is to allow profits to finance scholarships and food for children and street kids.