The valedictory function of ‘Yuvaspandhana 2010: Young at Risk for Environment Restoration’, the Second All Karnataka Convention of the Young at Risk (YaR) began at Don Bosco Hospet at 3.00 pm on Monday.

“Our life is a gift of God, what we make of our life is our gift to God“ said Fr. Thomas Koonan, Vice Provincial, Salesian Province, Bangalore in the presidential address. He congratulated the organizers and exhorted the children to grow up as good and responsible citizens.

Ms. Nagma, Don Bosco Vimala Nivas, Hospet, sharing her experience of the three day convention told the children that one`s destiny grows out of one`s hands. She exhorted the children to take responsibility for their lives, come up in life and not blame their parents and others for their failures.

“Though we came from different parts of the state of Karnataka, we lived like members of a family for the past three days. We take tremendous amount of energy, motivation and inspiration from this convention into our day today lives“, said Mr. Hanumantha, Don Bosco, Yadagiri.

“I myself was a child labourer and I know the bitterness of tears, the pangs of hunger and shame involved in going around in rags. I sincerely wish and pray that there may not be any more child labourers in our country“ said Mr. N. Yesudas, a social activist from Davengere, who also sponsored food for the entire three-day programme. He told the children to make maximum use of the opportunities available in various Don Bosco centres.

The children from Don Bosco Vimala Nivas, Hospet commenced the programme with the prayer dance. Cultural programmes included dances from BOSCO, Bangalore and theme dance from Don Bosco, Davangere and Karate demonstration from Don Bosco, Bidar. Ms. Nalina, Don Bosco, Davangere compeered the programme. Bro. Gerald, Don Bosco, Hospet welcomed the gathering. Fr. Kuriakose, Director, Don Bosco, Davangere proposed the vote of thanks and exhorted everyone to become good news and channels of God`s love in the world.

The Yuvaspandan 2010 thus was brought to a conclusion, with a fresh resolve by all the participating children to make every effort to improve and transform their lives and to carefully nurture everything in nature to create a better world for themselves and for the future generations to come.

The three day YaR convention held from 23-25 January 2010 marked the 150th year of the founding of the Salesian Congregation and the 25th year of the founding of Don Bosco, Hospet. The convention also marked the establishing of several child labour rehabilitation centres in nine districts of Karnataka after the project got initiated in 1994. Four hundred children and 40 staff members from 13 Don Bosco YaR centres participated in the programme.

By Fr. Joseph Kunnummel (Prasad)