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May Marist works be a safe place for children

12/10/2017: General House

One of the mandates of the 2009 Chapter wasto be “a highly significant presence among poor children and young people”. The Marists were invited to “look at the world with the eyes of poor children”.

The fruit of this vision was the intense work, during the mandate of the latest General Council, in favour of the implementation of a policy for the protection of children and the strengthening of the Marist International Solidarity Foundation (FMSI) as an NGO of the Institute, which promotes the good of children.

Within this prospect, in view of the 22nd General Chapter, the Council created a commission to prepare a document to be presented to the 22nd General Chapter. Brothers Lluis Serra, Sandro Bobrzyk, Jeffrey Crowe e Álvaro Sepúlveda were nominated. The document produced by the commission is called “Pre-Chapter Report on Child Protection and Child Rights”, consisting of three parts: Timeline of relevant events over re-cent years; Points of Primary Importance; Principles.

The challenge proposed for the General Chapter and the conviction of the Commission is that it must continue to progress to the point where this awareness reaches every corner of the Marist world, where the adults have the means needed to prevent and protect children from any kind of abuse and where effective action and procedures are in place regarding the dignity of children.

Given the variety of cultural and legal contexts in which Marists are present, each AU is expected to use every effort to advance the protection of children, according to their own circumstances. 

The fact of being an international Institute allows us to learn from one another and to foresee likely scenarios.

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