Transforming the Lives of Students with Disabilities at the Don Bosco Foundation of Cambodia at Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund, Kep Province
Sponsored by USAID through its Program American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (ASHA) and Salesian Missions, New Rochelle
Press Release 01/30/2017
KEP CITY, 30 JANUARY 2017. On January 31, 2017 the Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund of Kep Province will have the official opening of the institution as able to welcome children and youth with special physical conditions.
This is the first educative project in Cambodia that will offer such an opportunity:
It is not a school for disabled people. It is a “normal” school where disabled people will be integrated, said Fr Albeiro Rodas, Rector of the Institution in Kep. In this way, Don Bosco Kep will be a model for the Cambodian educative system to integrate children and youth who are physically challenged, including other Salesian projects in Cambodia that would prepare their own campuses for the physical access of disabled and elderly people. Just to change stairs for ramps and include lifts to high towers, makes a big change, providing a real inclusion of people in any educative center.
It is also a Project that guarantees the preference of the Salesians of Don Bosco for the poorest, the most vulnerable and those at risk. Children and youth with special physical conditions belong to the marginal groups in the Cambodian society. Many of them are kept in their poor homes, unable to attend school or prevented to get a dignified job, while others are used as beggars in Cambodian streets, beaches and tourist spots.
Cambodian society has the duty to integrate all its citizens that are physically challenged and it can be done just with the construction of physical access in public places, schools and factories, while educating Cambodians on theier acceptance and integration.
This is the message that Don Bosco is sending to the Cambodian society with the Project “Transforming the Lives of Students with Disabilities at the Don Bosco Foundation of Cambodia at Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund of Kep Province, a donation of USAID through its Program “American Schools and Hospitals Abroad” (ASHA) and Salesian Missions of New York.
On Tuesday, January 31, during the Solemnity of Saint John Bosco, the Program starts at 7AM with the Mass presided by Fr Roel Soto at the Don Bosco Birth-House Monument. Fr Gianluca Tavola, parish priest of Kampot and Kep, represents the Cambodian Catholic Church.
At 9AM there will be the official ceremony with the presence of Mr Sean Callahan, Deputy Mission Director of USAID in Cambodia, Fr Mark Hyde, Salesian Missions Director, Mr Jaime Correa-Montalvo, Director for International Programs and Fr Roel Soto, Superior of the Cambodian Salesian Delegation.
There is also a photographic exposition of Don Bosco Kep activities and Projects at the Multipurpose Hall, including graphic material about students that are physically challenged and have studied in Don Bosco.
At 2PM H.E. Khem Setha, Governor of Kep Province, will pay a visit to the Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund. There will be also sport activities between students and teachers of Don Bosco Kep and Don Bosco Sihanoukville. The day is closed with a night Cultural Program led by the students and children linked to Don Bosco Kep.
Don Bosco Foundation of Cambodia (DBFC) is a national and international not-for-profit organization based in the Kingdom of Cambodia since 1991 in agreement with the Royal Government, MOU No. 828 OI/MFAC May 26, 2015 for the education of children and youth from unprivileged or at risk communities. It has the Don Bosco Children Fund, kindergartens, literacy centers, youth centers and technical schools, all intended to give opportunities to children and youth from very poor families in order to prevent child labor or any form of exploitation and abuse of children and youth in Cambodia. The Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund of Kep was open in October 2011 under the guidance of Fr Albeiro Rodas (Fr Samnang) with emphasis in children and youth from Kep, Kampot, Takeo and Ratanakiri provinces. The Project works for the wellbeing of children and youth from rural families, ethnic minorities and persons who are physically challenged. It includes the empowering of girls and women and the education in the protection of the environment.
Fr Albeiro Rodas, DBFC’s Communications (+855) 97.371.2020 (WhatsApp)
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