After the celebration of the centenary from the birth of Blessed Alberto Marvelli, an exemplary past pupil and friend of Don Bosco, the National Federation of Past Pupils and Friends of Don Bosco, in partnership with the Maltese Association of the Order of Malta and Osanna Pia Home, launched an innovative social project to help homeless young people to live independently in the community.
Disadvantaged young poeple have various challenges to overcome poverty and social exclusion. Amongst the most vulnerable, there are young people who are homeless and lack the safety of a family. The high cost of owning a home and the steep rise of renting in Malta is making it more difficult for homeless young people to lead an independent life.
To respond to this reality, the National Federation of Past Pupils and Friends of Don Bosco in Malta, with the support of the Salesians of Don Bosco in Malta, and in partnership with the Maltese Association of the Order of Malta and Osanna Pia Home, have refurbished and started to operate a home in the community to accommodate and support three young people living in the community.
Since their arrival in Malta in 1903, the Salesians of Don Bosco in Malta have worked for the most marginalized young people with the kindness and support of benefactors. Today, they provide services to homeless young people through St. Patrick’s Salesian School in Sliema, Don Bosco House in Balzan, Osanna Pia Hostel and Mamma Margerita House, both in Sliema.The Salesians of Don Bosco in Malta have acquired a family home in Paola. This home was donated by the family of Dr. Mario Vella.
The Past Pupils and Friends of Don Bosco in Malta, with the collaboration of the Salesians in Malta, and in partnership with the Maltese Association of the Order of Malta and Osanna Pia Home, undertook the challenge to refurbish this family home and to provide support and mentoring to homeless young people. The aim of the project is to offer accommodation services to three young homeless people by providing supported independent living. Homeless young people will stay in this home for a temporary period with the aim to help them become totally independent. The proposal is that young people can stay for up to two years where they can be supported and prepared to move into the community and live independently.
The National Federation has developed a mentoring programme which will help these young people to live independently in the community. Mentoring young people is a powerful way of helping young people to bring them out of poverty and help them to become more socially included.