Young People Participate in Music Education to Stay Off the Streets – MissionNewswire

Lakay Don Bosco music program helps more than 100 young people escape violence

HAITI

(MissionNewswire) Young people from the musical program Lakay Don Bosco, known as “With our musical instruments we fight violence”, recently organized an event to show off their talents. More than 100 young people are involved, from Lakay Don Bosco and the surrounding neighborhood of La Saline, on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The goal is to support young people through music education to help them escape violence in their neighborhood.

“Salesian programs offer more than a traditional education and include lessons in music, art and sports,” said Fr Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the American development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “Young people need opportunities to have safe places to play and connect with adults and their peers. The Lakay Don Bosco music program helps young people stay off the streets and learn a skill they value.

Lakay Don Bosco was founded in 1988 in Port-au-Prince by an Italian Salesian priest. Father Attilio Stra started the project to respond to the needs of older children and young people who had been rejected and marginalized and were living in situations of abandonment, neglect or serious social risk. For more than 30 years, this has been the mission of Lakay Don Bosco.

Currently, the Lakay project includes five facilities in Port-au-Prince and one, divided into two sectors, in Cap-Haitien. Each of these structures was created to meet the needs of older children and young people living on the streets. In total, nearly 5,700 minors benefit from this project led by 57 employees.

The centers of the Lakay project are each specialized for the different stages of life and the types of help young people need. At the Foyer Lakay, the children live with their families for four years until the end of an apprenticeship in a technical profession. The Lakay Street Children Program provides shelter and educational services to street children in Cap-Haitien and Port-au-Prince.

Salesian missionaries began working in Haiti in 1935 in response to the Haitian government’s request for a vocational school. Since then, Salesian missionaries have expanded their work to include 11 major educational centers and over 200 schools across the country.

Each of the main centers includes a number of primary and secondary schools, vocational training centers and other programs for street children and youth in need. Salesian programs are spread throughout Haiti, especially in the cities of Port-au-Prince, Fort-Liberté, Cap-Haïtien, Les Cayes and Gressier. Today, Salesian missionaries in Haiti provide the largest source of education outside of the Haitian government with schools providing education for 25,500 primary and secondary students.

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Sources:

ANS Photo (permissions for use and guidelines should be requested from YEARS)

ANS – Haiti – Young people from “Lakay” and “La Saline” fight violence through music

Rinaldi Foundation

Facebook of the Rinaldi Foundation

Salesian Missions – Haiti

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