Salesians in South Sudan Rehabilitating, Reintegrating Street Children in Families

Don Bosco Kuajok: Street Children at the heart of Salesian Apostolate. Credit: Salesian Missions

Members of the Religious Institute of the Salesians of Don Bosco (SDB) ministering at their centre in South Sudan’s Wau Diocese are rehabilitating street children and helping reintegrate them with their respective families.

In a Thursday, April 21 report, SDB officials say Don Bosco Kuajok community center that was started three years ago has a primary school that educates 300 children and employs nine teachers. 

“There is also a program that offers addiction treatment and rehabilitation for street children who are roaming the market in the center of Kuajok,” they say.

SDB officials add, “With the support of Don Bosco Bonn in Germany, 150 children have been returned to their families since 2019."

“An oratory opens each day and provides for those in distant parts of Kuajok, who are most often internally displaced people,” they say in the April 21 report.


In the report, the director of the U.S development arm of SDB, Salesian Missions, says the Don Bosco Kuajok centre "aims to help children live safely while getting the emotional support they need and the education that will help them live independently." 

Fr. Gus Baek says the Kuajok Salesian program "offers a second chance for these children to have hope for a better life.” 

“Salesian missionaries in South Sudan and around the globe provide safety, shelter and education for street children,” Fr. Baek says. 

The Salesian missionaries say South Sudanese are experiencing "a dire humanitarian crisis" as a result of the civil war. 

They add in reference to World Bank statistics, "South Sudan is expansive and largely rural with 83 percent of the population residing in rural areas. Poverty is endemic with at least 80 percent of the population defined as income-poor and living on the equivalent of less than $1 per day." 

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The Salesian missionaries add that "more than one-third of the population lacks secure access to food." 

"Responding to the civil strife is nothing new to Salesian missionaries in South Sudan, who are dedicated to the programs and services they are providing across the country," say the missionaries who are providing various services to the South Sudanese people.

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.