Salesian Oratory of Sliema committed to youth projects
The main objective of the Oratory, better known as ‘Salesjani’ in Sliema is to carry out activities aimed at promoting holistic education of the young. All members are helped to understand that they belong to a family in which they are welcome and to which they have a positive contribution to make. Throughout the years, the Oratory has been able to reach out and animate various young people and help them to develop and implement new ideas by creating new opportunities for them. The Oratory which was founded back in 1908 embraces several sub groups, each with its own specialisation to empower young members to become leaders.
Like the previous years, 2016 was no exception with various informal activities. Throughout this year, 70 young people are lucky enough to have the opportunity to be prepared and meet on a weekly basis for formation sessions to become good leaders in various projects of the Oratory. One of these projects, is the Bosco Summer School which has been going on for the last 18 years. For six weeks, from mid-July to the end of August, these young leaders will be prepared for 230 children between the ages of 6-13years to help them be creative. This year’s theme was “I’m Going Where He’s Going”, and this educational journey ended up with a great and colourful, Evening of Awards, where all the children and young leaders performed in style and creativity, an evening to remember under the patronage of her Excellency, the President of Malta, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca and her husband and also by Chris Aguis, the Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sport.
The Salesian Oratory in Sliema also hosts projects funded by EU, Agenzija Żgħażagħ, Malta Arts Fund, the Malta Community Chest Fund and the Small Initiative Scheme. Mainly these funds are provided to encourage more children and young people to have various opportunities to gain more skills and competences. Last Easter the Salesian Oratory hosted 2 countries, Lithuania and Czech Republic for an Erasmus+ Youth Exchange with the theme, ‘EQ in Intercultural Sensitivity: The difference that makes the difference’.
Through informal workshops, the intercultural evenings and team building, 30 young participants contributed towards strengthening social ties among communities and thereby nurtured individual as well as organisational self-esteem and ultimately their well being.
Another project which just finished and funded by Agenzija Zghazagh“Renov8 + Cre8”, was the upgrade of the already existing Band Room, which is another educational spot that the Salesian Oratory is providing to various young people who love music. The Salesian Oratory strongly believes in: providing both challenges and opportunities to many young people, in the empowerment already mentioned above, the respect, integration and inclusion efforts to ensure greater impact in supporting the development of young people and in helping them to realise their full potential.
Through “Renov8 + Cre8” and also on a daily basis all year round, the Salesian Oratory responds to the needs and concerns of many young people from all walks of life, and act in their best interests with a view to maximising their human potential, and by providing user-friendly access to quality services and equality of opportunity with the aim of ensuring their active participation in society.
Funds from the Community Chest Fund were also provided to upgrade the roof of the Oratory for safety reasons. The Salesian Oratory strongly believes that both children and young people need to have a safe and modern environment to keep up with their needs. The Salesian Brigade which is also part of the Salesian Oratory in Sliema, also gained funds from the Community Chest Fund to renovate a semi-construction site at the Ghajn Tuffieha Upper Barracks, which was passed to the Salesian Brigade by the government in 2010, and will be soon turned into an educational and recreation centre. This facility, with camping space, spacious live-in and sleepover area, for members of the Brigade, members of the Oratory or any NGO, will offer an ‘away from it all’ pristine location and will give the opportunity to young people to further explore their knowledge and skills.