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Fruitful meetings between FMSI and the Superiors of the Marist Provinces

19/04/2012: General House

In the seminar organised by the Institute on « Child protection: from denial of abuse to recognition – from policy to practice », held at the General House in Rome from 21 to 28 March, FMSI had a privileged place. Br Jim Jolley, director of the Geneva office, was among the presenters and he pitched his presentation in the context of the Convention on the Rights of Minors. In addition, thanks to our meeting with the Provincials, each day, from14:00 to 16:00, we had the opportunity to exchange on our projects in course and the needs of all the Provinces of Africa and Asia and especially the countries of Latin America. We received reports of several projects completed and we were able to ask for clarifications and become directly acquainted from the persons concerned with the needs and priorities of each of the Administrative Units.

Here are the results of some of the more significant encounters:

* Signing of an official accord with the Province of « Mediterranea ».

* Discussion and clarification with the Province of « México Occidental », also responsible for Haïti, about the project of construction of a Youth Centre in the city of Gérémie (Haïti), requested some months ago by the Brothers there, fully supported by the Mexican superiors and on the point of achieving success in regard to permits, the project of execution and the calendar of works.

*  We obtained important information on some Marist works in Asia, particularly on a social project in Sri Lanka in collaboration with the Marist school of Negombo. We talked about a project to be realised at the « St. Marcellin Secondary School » in Mangamanuthu, in the south of India, in the state of Tamil Nadu (whose name means « Land of the Temples »). In this region, a great part of the population belong to the 'Dalit' community, classed among the   'pariahs', that is, the lowest social class. St. Marcellin School has been funded to guarantee the access to education for dalit children and youngsters in Mangamanuthu area. The new project aims at launching higher secondary courses in the school, in order to offer to the dalit youth more chances for their professional and social insertion.

*  With the Superiors of « Southern Africa » we talked, among other things, about a training project for the detainees in the prison of Lilongwe ('Maula Prison') in Malawi, which FMSI has guaranteed full support.

*  With the Province of Central East Africa, we spoke of priority support for some schools of the RDC. There is question of a possible twinning between a Roman technical high school and the Institut Technique Industriel de Chololo, in Kisangani, where FMSI has already financed a micro-project for the renewal of some equipment.

*  And finally, an interesting project examined with the Province of « Norandina » aimed at the   formation of directors and teachers in the Marist schools on the Rights of Minors, to be put into operation in the three countries of the Province: Colombia, Venezuela and Ecuador. The   classes will be given partly with the obligatory presence of those concerned and partly on line, the whole co-ordinated by the University of Bogotá, and also in collaboration with the FMSI office in Geneva.

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