Taking inspiration from Pope Francis' encyclical "Laudato Si' ", we at DGBA aim to carry out his message for the care of all creation and our one and only planet. The priority areas hence are chosen so that we can concentrate our actions on these areas to have a wider reach where small actions matter with our members. With the ongoing climate crisis that our world is facing, we believe that these initiatives taken at the grassroots level will be a sustainable way forward for our members to gain what we risk losing. Take a look at our priority areas and find out what you can carry out for your family/community/institute.
Humanity is called to recognize the need for changes of lifestyle, production and consumption in order to combat global warming. (LS 23)
A Green Campus is an educative space that emphasizes the importance of environmental sustainability and highlights the interconnection between nature and humans. It promotes those very lifestyle changes needed to fight global climate change. It is also a place where environmentally responsible practices and education are in harmony, and where principles of sustainability are promoted through example. Becoming a Green Campus also means taking the lead in rethinking our environmental responsibilities while at the same time developing new ideas and solutions for problems that are local, national and global in nature.
“Every Salesian Province in the world will respond, through the Provincial Delegate for Youth Ministry, to the request to make our schools, education centres, university campuses, oratories and parishes into educational models of care for the environment and for nature.” Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major.
We are striving towards:
1. Engaging all member institutions to actively start the process of becoming a green campus.
2. Establishing nature/green/eco-clubs in schools, colleges and universities to promote green activities.
3. Ensuring that member institutions formulate and follow an Environmental Policy that focuses on sustainable waste management, reducing plastic pollution, and reducing their carbon and water footprint.
4. Encouraging all member institutions to transition to a hundred per cent use of renewable energy.
The ecological crisis is also a summons for profound interior conversion. (LS 217)
Over the course of humanity’s existence on Earth, we have travelled a long way down the wrong path of losing our connection to the natural world. Our impact on the natural functioning of ecosystems is damaging the only known habitable world in our solar system. It is thus our choice and our responsibility to act with courage and wisdom. The practice of Eco-Spirituality with its fundamental belief in the sacredness of nature, Earth and the universe can show us the path to a new way of reconnecting with nature.
A number of members of the Don Bosco Green Alliance are parish communities that can engage and involve in Ecological Spirituality. Eco-Spirituality brings together environmental activism and religion. Parishes and Youth Centres have the passion and commitment to work towards environmental action, and can be powerful examples to follow in the community, thereby influencing a lot of people.
“We Salesians commit ourselves to being credible witnesses, personally and as a community, of conversion in caring for Creation and Ecological Spirituality.” Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major
We are striving towards:
1. Encouraging Salesian parishes to evolve into a Green Parish or Eco Parish.
2. Promoting care for creation in Salesian schools and parishes as a social responsibility and a moral obligation.
3. Ensuring the theme of respect for the Earth and Nature is included in faith formation classes, especially when discussing contemporary issues.
4. Enabling training of faith educators on ecological spirituality as an integral aspect of faith education and training.
Young people have a new ecological sensitivity and a generous spirit, and some of them are making admirable efforts to protect the environment. (LS 209)
The last few years have put the spotlight on youth movements in the field of environmental action. From Fridays for Future to the Extinction Rebellion, young people have been at the forefront of climate advocacy across the globe. Campaigning and advocacy is an important way forward for youth to engage world leaders, politicians, industry and their contemporaries to make their voices heard. Hence, the Don Bosco Green Alliance is enabling and supporting the participation of young people from the Salesian Youth Movement in international campaigns and programmes on environmental issues. Participating in these campaigns provides a platform for young people to raise their voices for a just, sustainable and safe future for them and the coming generations.
“Let us expand the network of Salesian institutions to be included in the Don Bosco Green Alliance, fostering the participation of the young in global campaigns on behalf of the sustainability of environmental and ecological causes for the care of creation and human life.” Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major.
We are striving towards:
1. Encouraging and enabling youth participation in global environmental campaigns by international agencies like the United Nations.
2. Supporting young people to develop skills required for effective and meaningful participation in global environmental campaigns.
3. Providing climate change education to young people to develop awareness, motivation and skills necessary for youth action on overcoming the challenges posed by the ongoing climate emergency.
Good education plants seeds when we are young, and these continue to bear fruit throughout our life. (LS 213)
We are in the middle of an unprecedented crisis that has happened in this century. Despite our technological advances, nature has shown us the importance of the natural world and how unsustainable our lifestyles have become. Children and youth will be the first to face the brunt of this unsustainable lifestyle. In order for our children to inherit a better and safer world, it has become imperative to empower today's children and youth with the knowledge and leadership skills to meet future environmental challenges. Hence, we are playing an active role in educating the next generation of environmentally committed citizens and leaders. Providing environmental education helps nurture growing respect for nature and all living things.
“As a Salesian option in education, we must include action on behalf of creation: care for nature, climate and sustainable development.” Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major.
We are striving towards:
1. Integrating environmental education in the curriculum of schools and universities to promote green attitudes, knowledge and skills.
2. Promoting the ‘Green TVET’ programme across all Salesian TVET Networks.
3. Establishing global, regional and local partnerships to promote ecological education within the Salesian network, thereby encouraging environmental stewardship amongst children and youth.
4. Nurturing green-minded leaders and thinkers that will raise a new generation of highly motivated thought leaders, through promotion of environmental education and green skills training