World Parents’ Day: Salesian missions highlight programs that support parents and children – Ukraine


World Parents Day is celebrated annually on June 1

(MissionNewswire) Salesian missionsthe American development branch of the Salesians of Don Bosco, joins humanitarian organizations and the international community in celebrating World Parents’ Day, proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012. The day, celebrated annually on June 1 , pays tribute to parents around the world and provides an opportunity to appreciate all parents for their commitment to children.

In their work in more than 130 countries around the world, Salesian missionaries support the parents of children in their programs. Fr Gus Baek, Director of Salesian Missions, said: “There are many ways Salesian programs support parents. Whether it’s the education we provide so that young single mothers can learn a skill for employment, or providing feeding programs to ensure that children have at least one meal a day at school or even to provide health clinics, the Salesians do not only take care of the young people but of the whole family.”

In honor of World Parents’ Day, the Salesian Mission is proud to share programs around the world that provide support for parents and their children.


Salesian missionaries have worked in Ukraine providing education and social development services in cities across the country, including Kyiv, Zhytomyr and Lviv. On the eastern Dnipro front, Salesian Father Oleh Ladnyuk has been military chaplain to Ukrainian troops since 2014, when the Donbass conflict broke out. He also normally travels between the villages of the region to offer courses in Salesian youth ministry in Greek Catholic parishes. The invasion changed P. Ladnyuk’s work. He now works on evacuations and provides safety and support to children and families.

In the hours immediately following the invasion, Fr. Ladnyuk saw stunned people on the streets, lines of cars looking for fuel, and people at ATMs trying to withdraw as much money as possible. He heard about the first bombardments and saw the first dead. Then he left for Lysytchansk, accompanied by Father Igor Opafsky. Everything was already organized.

Prof. Ladnyuk rescued 12 people, including women and two-week-old Tymofij. “It is not whole families, but pieces of families that are separating. Fathers and mothers make sure their children are safe, then decide to stay home, under the bombs.

After the trip, Fr. Ladnyuk returned to Dnipro. There are many people in need whom the Salesians can still help. Salesians in Ukraine will continue to provide support to children and families as Salesians around the world work to bring humanitarian aid to those in need.


Don Bosco Lahore distributed humanitarian aid to 200 Afghan refugee families in the community of Peshawar, Pakistan, partly thanks to donor funding provided by Salesian Missions. The Salesian community offered shelter and basic necessities to 1,500 people, mostly children.

Mr. Vincent, who coordinated the distribution, said: “The Christian community in Peshawar has rallied around the value of solidarity. We were proud to be able to selflessly help people of other religions in a spirit of universal brotherhood.

The Salesian centers in Quetta and Lahore offer quality education and an innovative style of teaching. More than 1,000 students from disadvantaged families attend Salesian schools. The Salesians began providing education in Pakistan in 1998, and today their centers are considered one of the best in the country.


Salesian missionaries worked in Gumbo, south sudan, helping thousands of people over the past few years. The Salesians run a parish, a primary school with 1,800 pupils, a high school with 450 pupils, a technical school, an oratory and a camp for the internally displaced which houses 9,500 people. The Salesians also work in collaboration with the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, who run another primary school, and the Sisters of Charity of Jesus, who provide a health clinic.

More recently, the Salesian Missionary Foundation, based in Warsaw, Poland, built a school in Gumbo for poor children in the region. Father Piotr Gozdalski, president of the foundation, said: “In primary school, we have 140 students per class. The school badly needed new premises. The four classrooms built make it possible to divide the groups and have fewer students per class, which benefits everyone’s safety and the quality of the education offered.

Last year, the Salesian Missionary Foundation also paid for meals for 700 primary school students and provided food for 700 of the most needy families in the camp. The foundation also provided the dispensary with medicines and hygiene and personal care products. Educational sessions have been organized to encourage the adoption of healthy lifestyle habits.


The Salesian Circumscription of Central Italy and the banking institution Intesa Sanpaolo have signed an agreement in favor of families with children of school age who attend Salesian schools and vocational training centers in Abruzzo, Lazio, Liguria, Marche, Sardinia, Tuscany and Umbria.

As part of an initiative by Intesa Sanpaolo’s environmental social governance sector, impact loans will provide families with a line of credit of 2,000 or 3,000 euros per year for a period of one to five years.

The goal is to help families ensure their financial sustainability while their children are in school. The loans will provide families with money to purchase products and services related to education (school fees, books, etc.), coverage of special educational needs (psychomotricity, speech therapy) and other activities promoting personal development (sports, summer camps, training experiences abroad).


UKRAINE: Salesian missionaries rescue children and families after invasion /ANS Photo (permissions for use and guidelines must be requested from ANS)

PAKISTAN: Afghan refugee families receive humanitarian aid/Photo courtesy of Salesian Missions (contact for permissions to use)

SOUTH SUDAN: Families receive food and medicine at a camp for internally displaced people/ANS Photo (permissions for use and guidelines must be requested from ANS)

ITALY: Families receive help with school fees

Salesian missions

United Nations World Parents Day


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