El Salvador

Population:6.2 millionLiteracy Rate:84%Religion: Roman Catholic (57.1%)

The Salesians are empowering the youth of El Salvador to create their own opportunities for success now and later in life. Student input, innovation and involvement over the years have resulted in exceptional programs that are enabling children to overcome poverty and realize their full potential. Salesian partnerships with government-funded facilities are further strengthening the positive impact on young people.

Featured Mission

Bring Sports Programs

In Soyapango, near the outskirts of San Salvador, a 35 acre multi-sports complex gives youth the opportunity to participate in sports in a safe environment.  Facilities include three basketball courts, a football stadium with an Olympic running track, soccer pitches, an auditorium, a multi-functional hall and video and information technology studios.  Students enjoy playing, as well as training courses in various sports, leadership and information technology. Salesians run the facilities, which were financed by the governments of Spain and El Salvador. 

More Missions in El Salvador

Build Schools

Through a remarkable project in San Salvador, youth have turned a garbage dump into successful factories – and their futures into one of entrepreneurship and hope.

Youth were a driving force in the creation of the Polígono Industrial Don Bosco, a complex that houses 11 cooperative factories that generate $900,000 annually.  Once Salesian Missions priest José Maria Moratalla proposed a technical school be built in a poor neighborhood on the site of a dump, youth suggested building workshops where they could practice a trade right in their community.  Twenty years later, the idea has grown to include a day care center, a technical school and recreational facilities.  Serving at-risk youth from low-income families, the Polígono Industrial Don Bosco has helped mainstream former street children, gang members and juvenile offenders by giving them an education and a stake in the businesses where the older youth work.  In addition to their ABCs, the young students in the technical school – even the preschoolers – learn that access to jobs and a stake in the business is possible.

The Inter-American Development Bank supported the project, to learn more about this project, visit their website.

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