Salesian Samoa’s Unique Act of Charity

by Fr. Julian Fox SDB

Don Bosco Technical College, Alafua, Samoa, has just donated 35,000 Euro worth of furniture to victims of last year’s Tsunami which ravaged the islands, killing nearly 100 people in Samoa alone. One young Salesian from nearby islands (belonging to Tonga) lost many of his family in the tragedy.

But now, when the world has completely forgotten about this particular wave, though it would do well to remember that ninety percent of all major world tsunamis occur in the Pacific Ocean, the Salesian community, especially as represented by its Rector and principal of Don Bosco Technical College, Fr Petelo Vito Pau, has carried through an extraordinary act of charity. The school chose 60 families affected by the tragedy, and Fr Petelo or members of his staff visited all of them.

“The donations are for families which are not yet back on their feet”, said Fr Petelo.

“It is another way to show our support and love for our families and friends who suffered hardship and devastation”.

Fr Petelo says the effort was funded by Caritas Italia and Salesian Missions (ASMOAF) Australia. The work was done by students of the Wood Technology Department at the school.

The aid includes 40 dining tables, 100 benches, 40 single beds, 20 double beds, 40 wooden trunks, 150 chairs and 30 coffee tables. A local clergyman spoke on behalf of recipients of the goods, saying, “We don’t feel like victims anymore. We feel confident and thankful for your support and everyone who helped us. Thank you Fr Petelo, and thanks to your students, Caritas Italia and Salesian Missions”.