The Don Bosco Network has been very busy the last few months with a number of important meetings and events (which are summarized below in this newsletter). The good news is the cooperation and networking between Salesian Family or-ganizations is improving. Only when we work in synergy, mutual trust and support we can ensure that the Don Bosco mission for young people will be long–lasting and sustainable with great positive impact in the lives of young people worldwide.
We are happy to welcome a new member to DBN: SAVIO from Slovakia. We are happy to see great interest from other Salesian organizations to cooperate and network with us through our online platform and other programs and projects. With a new board of directors and a new strategic plan for next 3 years, we hope to be of even better service to the Don Bosco mission. The main focus points for us in next 3 years are:
1) communication and synergy (including the online platform);
2) capacity building (PDOs, TVET…), effective support to SDB in emergency situations and training on prepared-ness for natural disasters; and
3) advocacy, development education and missionary ani-mation.
Thematic working groups are effective tool to achieve good results and impact.
I would like to conclude with a phrase from our mission state-ment: Youth at the heart of development! Let us remember this in all our activities.
With Kind Regards,
Peter Annegarn, DBN President
In the tradition of the Catholic Church, the month of June is dedi-cated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. In fact, 2018 marks the first year that the Rector Major and his full General Council celebrate the Solemnity of the Sa-cred Heart of Jesus specifically at the Basilica built on His name here in Rome by Don Bosco himself. As you know, this place is now the residence of our world Generalate. Living and working at this holy Salesian place, the Sacro Cuore, makes us keep in mind (and memory) the tremendous energy and faith Don Bosco put for this extremely demanding enterprise entrust-ed to him directly by Pope Leo XIII. And it was not on-ly energy and faith, but also tears. As you may re-member, it was during the inauguration of the Basili-ca, in May 1887, that Don Bosco shed abundant tears while celebrating at the altar of Mary Help of Chris-tians. All of this is very inspiring also for us — the people of the Don Bosco Network – especially if we consider how clear and rooted two crucial topics were in the mind and heart of Don Bosco:
1) the centrality of the mission at the service of the youth; and
2) the total confidence on the Divine Providence, Who will certainly and timely provide all means, human and material ones, in order to accom-plish this divine and educative mission.
Please, next time you come to Rome, spend some vital moments at the Basilica of Sacro Cuore thinking on these things. All are most welcome!
In Don Bosco,
Fr. Guillermo Basañes, Councilor for the Missions
JOINT MEETING OF DBN MEMBERS AND MISSION OFFICES
31.05.2018, members of the Don Bosco Network and SDB Mission Offices (accompanied by the Councilor for the Missions Fr Guillermo Basanes, the Economer General Bro Jean Paul Muller and the Coordi-nator of Mission Offices Fr George Menamparampil), met at the Sale-sian Pontifical University in Rome. The participants discussed the pos-sibilities for greater synergy between the SDB NGOs and Mission Offic-es for more effective support to the Don Bosco mission worldwide.
DBN GENERAL ASSEMBLY
1.06.2018, members of the Don Bosco Network gath-ered for the annual General Assembly. Participants eval-uated the activities and programs of the network and approved a Data Protection Policy to comply with GDPR (new EU data protection law) and the Strategic Plan of work for the next 3 years. SAVIO from Slovakia was wel-comed as a new DBN member. The meeting concluded with the elections to the Board of directors. The new board members are:
• President: Peter Annegarn from Via Don Bosco (re–elected)
• Councilor for the Missions: Fr Guillermo Basanes (permanent Board member, official representative of the SDB General Council)
• Treasurer: Alessandro Brescia from VIS (re–elected)
• Board Member: Carlos Caballero from Jovenes y Desarrollo (re–elected)
• Board Member: Fr Noel Maddhichetty from BoscoNet (newly elected)
• Coordinator of Mission Offices: Fr George Men-amparampil (permanent presence at Board meetings)
With this leadership, the Don Bosco Network is looking ahead with confidence to fruitful cooperation with all partners in effective and sustainable support to Don Bosco mission worldwide.
UPDATES ON WORKING GROUPS
The 5th advocacy meeting of Salesian organizations took place on the 26 February 2018 at the Salesian Pontifical University in Rome, Italy. The meeting was organized by the Don Bosco Network (DBN) and sup-ported by Don Bosco International (DBI). Over 20 representatives of Salesian organizations attended the meeting and shared their activities of ad-vocacy in several fields. The General Councilors for the Missions and Youth Ministry, Fr. Guillermo Basañes and Fr. Fabio Attard accompanied the meeting. Among the topics discussed were Migration and the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. At the discussion on mi-gration we dealt with a part of the document of the Ho-ly See on U.N. Global Compacts (the part on migrants and refugees). The meeting concluded with Fr. Attard’s presentation on the “Frame of Reference” and its appli-cation to advocacy. The advocacy meeting grows year after year, and so does the number of joint initiatives.
Fifteen representatives of the Don Bosco Network’s member organizations met at the Salesian Pontifical University in Rome for meetings of the working groups on Development Education, and Development Cooper-ation. The participants exchanged their experience as well as their planned common projects and programs. The topics discussed included:
• Sustainable Development Agenda;
• Global Education;
• effective Emergency Response;
• capacity building and support to PDOs worldwide;
• Don Bosco Tech Africa network;
• and TVET centers in Latin America.
Fr Guillermo Basanes the Councillor for Missions and Fr George Menamparampil the Coordinator of Mission Offices accompanied the meetings.
A seminar took place at the “Fraterna Domus” in Sacrofano, near Rome, for the leaders and staff of Sa-lesian Mission Offices. Among the participants were a few members of the Don Bosco Network, some Planning and Development Offices, a few foundations and other Salesian organiza-tions involved in activities of communication, fundrais-ing and development. The training was on digital mar-keting: “Technology at the service of the mission.” There were 65 representatives from Salesian organiza-tions from all five continents. They took part in a work-shop on how to be more effective in modern fundrais-ing and also held a working meeting to discuss mutual collaboration in support of the Don Bosco mission worldwide. “It is not enough to do good; we must also do it well,” says a famous proverb. The Salesian net-work is working, indeed, to do so at its best.
An international conference of the PDO’s of the congregation took place in Nairobi. It was attended by over 130 Salesians and lay people representing PDO’s from all SDB regions. The Don Bosco Network participated actively. It was also an opportunity to conclude 4 years of an EU–funded project focused on the capacity building of the PDO’s of ACP countries, a project led by VIS. It was also a chance to launch the new PDO Manual prepared by the Economer General Bro Jean Paul Muller. Inputs by experts and discussions in working groups helped our reflections and with the preparation of recommendations for new effective management techniques in Salesian Provinces. The outcomes of the meeting will help to prepare a new Road Map for the development of PDOs.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE MECHANISM
At the international conference of PDO’s in Nairobi, the Don Bosco Network launched the Emergency Response Mechanism.This manual has been recommended as the guide for SDB provinces for an effective, coordinated response to emergencies. The booklet, printed in five languages, was made available to all of the provinces. The elec-tronic version of the document is available on the online platform: http://pdo.donbosconetwork.org/en/documents/.
If your province did not receive a copy of the booklet or you would like to have a designed electronic version of the booklet you may contact DBN Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org. The DBN working group is preparing plans for a training in effective emer-gency response, to be delivered in the regions for all the provinces especially in areas “at risk” prone to ex-perience emergencies. (Have a look in the link at World Risk Report Analysis and prospects 2017: https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/WRR_2017_E2.pdf)