The Oasis of Pietà Orphanage welcomes less privileged children and minors, encouraging their growth and educational formation.
The Oasis of Pietà Orphanage seeks to offer children in need a more suitable alternative, providing them with a safe environment to grow and protecting them from any form of violation or abuse.
This initiative intends also to protect children from any form of violence, assault, physical or mental brutality, neglect or disregard, maltreatment, or exploitation. It seeks to guarantee the serenity, well-being, and respect for the rights of every child.
Although owned by the Coptic Catholic Church in Egypt, the Oasis of Pietà Orphanage – in respecting the religious affiliation of the children – welcomes all children without any discrimination based on religion.
This initiative is a fruit of the “Document on Human Fraternity” and is created to offer a suitable alternative to children and young people under the age of 18 – regardless of their religious affiliation – who do not have the care of a family.
THE NAME OF THE ORPHANAGE
The name Oasis of Pietà was inspired by the gift of an authentic copy of Michelangelo’s Pietà Statue that His Holiness Pope Francis generously offered for this project in 2019.
A logo was created specifically for the Oasis of Pietà Orphanage.
THE GENERAL GOALS
It is the goal of the Oasis of Pietà Orphanage:
1. To offer an appropriate residence for a complete accommodation of children, offering them a dignified standard of living.
2. To satisfy all the nutritional, health, educational, psychological and social, needs of children and minors and, respect their desires, opinions privacy, provide them with guidance and advice in order to help them to acquire acceptable positive behavior in society.
3. To offer children and minors a social environment and an adequate family atmosphere that gives them the opportunity to enjoy their legitimate rights, guaranteed by the State for their social wellbeing and stability.
4. To provide methods that protect children from the deviation and dangers to which they can be exposed, and to inculcate in them correct behaviors and at the same time provide them with social security to ensure their healthy development.
5. To safeguard the children’s physical, psychological, linguistic, mental and social development, this way, we can help them live a normal life in line with the objectives of the society and its religious and cultural values.
6. To promote self-confidence of children so that they could build a positive vision of themselves and become autonomous, making them proactive in society.
The general vision of the Oasis of Pietà Orphanage, therefore, is to help to improve the lives of the children who are living there and to offer them a real opportunity for their human, spiritual, social, vocational, educational and professional growth and development. The only goal of the Oasis of Pietà is to help children to be independent and to become positive and proactive in their relationships with others.
CONCRETE OPPORTUNITY FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH
Since the initiative is the result of the “Document on Human Fraternity”, the Oasis of Pietà Orphanage welcomes all children without any distinction of religion; it respects the religious affiliation of every child. Therefore the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage is committed to:
• Preparing a monthly religious program for the children.
• Educating the children on various religious rites, beliefs and worship by urging them to respect them.
• Participating in the organization of seminars, lessons and discussion meetings on children's religious awareness.
• Organizing several religious-related courses for the children and creating religious paintings that include sermons, lessons and various stories.
• Religious assistance is meant to strengthen the religious beliefs of children and strengthen the bond between them and their knowledge of religious sciences through:
The knowledge of religious rites and beliefs, ritual practices and worship acquired on different religious occasions;
The study of the various religious books;
The Organization of religious lessons and seminars, which include counseling, sermons, stories and lessons;
The creation of religious symbols on topics aimed at orientation and education.
CONCRETE OPPORTUNITY FOR SOCIAL GROWTH
The Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage creates and develops social programs aimed at helping minors to achieve a psychological and social balance - and not in the case of subsequent assistance - and to provide them with proactive behavioral models that make them good citizens, like the following:
• Helping to provide children / young people with moral values, ethical virtues and good customs such as honesty - tolerance – exemplary life - devotion- loyalty - cooperation - protection of the environment - and respect of the law.
• Helping to strengthen social concepts in children / young people and to encourage them to participate in all social events.
• Helping them develop behavioral skills in their interaction with others both inside and outside the Orphanage.
• Utilizing educational programs that will help children and young people realize their skills and abilities and to develop them.
• Offering children and young people the opportunity to express their feelings and ideas, allowing them to be creative and innovative.
• Creating a daily schedule that includes various activities and projects.
CONCRETE OPPORTUNITY FOR EDUCATIONAL GROWTH
The Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will specifically offer children / young people all the necessary educational care:
• The Children / young people will be enrolled in different levels of education, according to their age, in public or private schools, according to the economic resources of the Orphanage; or they will be enrolled in professional rehabilitation centers and middle or higher education, also based on their capabilities.
• The children / minor who have not attended compulsory school will be enrolled in literacy courses.
• The Orphanage will support the payment of school fees for the children / minors enrolled in the schools, according to their levels of education. In the event that one of the children / minor is enrolled in an educational institution in another governorate, the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will pay for all costs related to accommodation, food and transportation - provided that the child / minor returns on occasions and during holidays at the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage.
• It will provide all the clothing and school supplies necessary for children / minors (clothes - books - tools etc.)
• It will arrange the right places and times to allow children / minors to study and deepen their educational formation.
• It will engage private teachers for the children / minors to follow their lessons and studies and to help to increase their level of education.
• It will periodically observe the children / minors in schools to determine their level of education and follow up on their attendance and commitment in school.
CONCRETE OPPORTUNITY OF PROFESSIONAL GROWTH
The Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will guarantee for the minors - and not in the case of subsequent assistance – the possibility to adhere to the professional training required for the labour market in order to improve their skills for future job opportunities and to protect them from deviances. In particular:
• Professional workshops will be provided for the training of minors on the various professions such as: carpentry; painting; maintenance of electronic devices; sewing etc.
• Children / minors, especially those who have dropped out of schools, will have to attend vocational training centers to receive training in the various craft professions according to their desire and inclinations of each of them.
• Enrollments of minors in specialized training courses will be scheduled so that they could acquire various professional skills and encourage them to work freely, carrying out small projects.
The recreational activities that the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will offer to its children / minors is an environment for them to engage in socially healthy actions that encourage socialization and the development of psycho-expressive skills.
Conscious that the child has the right to rest and free time, as well as the right to engage in recreational activities of their age and to participate freely in cultural and artistic life, the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will fully encourage the participation of the child / minors to cultural and artistic life, encouraging the organization of appropriate means of entertainment and recreational, artistic and cultural activities.
The purpose of the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will reach out to the widest number of children / minors without family assistance and provide them with concrete protection and dignity, and also to promote the participation of potential beneficiaries in their life, as well as social knowledge of the problem. The aim is to transform the problem into an opportunity, the suffering of these children into a positive force both for themselves and for society.
The Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage, therefore, intends to create a safe and protective environment for children and minors, welcoming those of them who do not have the care of a family so that they can receive affection, support, protection, accompaniments, and growth needed to enable them to build a better future both for themselves and for society.
The Orphanage will have the following means and methods to achieve its objectives:
1. The development of an integrated and effective program and system which ensures the efficient management of the human resources and financial capacities available in the institution so as to guarantee the quality of childcare and the healthy social growth of children / young people.
2. The application of balanced educational methods that help and support the child / young people, based on the principle of giving and receiving, the enjoyment of rights and the execution of duties to build a personality capable of facing life and participating in it, able to take responsibility for the job and to found a family.
3. The presence of managerial classes and qualified human resources (educationally, psychologically and academically speaking) to deal with children / young people in order to form a healthy social life in them.
4. The continuous application of all methods and criteria of counseling and psychological and social assistance to overcome the social difficulties of children / young people, to help them overcome the identity disorder crisis, and to accept their condition in accordance with the objectives and religious and cultural values of society.
5. The effort to foster cultural, social and national values in the children minors in order to implant in them the national sense and the importance of work to help build society and at the same time to help them build respect for the other members of different cultural and social values.
6. To afford all the appropriate opportunities to train young minors in specialized professional centers so that they could acquire skills and knowledge of the various professions and could promote professional projects based on their inclinations and abilities. They can so be qualified to carry out professional work and to become productive energies that contribute to the economic activity of the society.
WHERE WILL THE OASIS BE LOCATED?
The area evaluated as suitable for the construction of the Oasis of the Pietà is located in the "new administrative capital" situated in the Governorate of Cairo, 45 km east of the current capital and just outside the second ring road of Greater Cairo. The "new administrative capital" will host the main government offices and ministries, as well as the Parliament and foreign embassies.
It has a landmass of 700 km² and a population of 5 million people, although it is estimated that it could reach up to 7 million.
The land on which the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage will be constructed has a total area of 6,429.77 square meters, of which 1,994 square meters represent the covered area and the remaining 4,435.77 square meters represent the surface of the external area.
HOW MANY CHILDREN / YOUNG PEOPLE WILL BE HOSTED?
The Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage considers the possibility of hosting a maximum number of 300 children / minors from the age of 7 to the age of 18.
WHAT ARE THE SERVICES OFFERED BY THE ORPHANAGE?
• A complete library within the Orphanage to help develop the children’s cultural and knowledge skills.
• Basic services (kitchen - restaurant - toilet - laundry), with at least one bathroom for every five children.
• Places used as warehouses (food - supplies - clothes - toiletries and cleaning).
• Place of worship.
• Nurse for medical care and also in case of need for the care of a sick child.
• Qualified premises assigned to be used for study and recreational spaces for the practice of various activities, arts and skills.
• Administration offices; rooms to receive visitors; rooms used for the reception of psychologists and social workers.
• Private garden or an outdoor area with a swimming pool so that the children of the Oasis of the Pietà can play and exercise sports and mobility activities.
• The building complex will consist of a basement, a ground floor, 1 story floor and 1st, 2nd, and 3rd floors.
HOW WILL THE HOME BE FURNISHED?
The bedrooms of the children / minors will be equipped with adequate furniture so that each child has a bed and a wardrobe to preserve his privacy, and a shelf / a box for keeping toys. The windows will have the addition of a net to prevent the entry of insects together with the curtains to protect the children from the sun and cold.
Adequate furniture and equipment were planned in the living and study rooms (study table - chairs - shelves for storing books and school tools), and for practicing activities and receiving visitors.
The use of safe design furniture that allows children to move freely has been considered and the furniture will be comfortable, shaped, and sized, suitable for children's growth and development needs.
The floors will be covered with natural materials and "carpets" will not be used because they are dangerous for the health of children.
The administrative rooms, offices and specialist rooms will be equipped with adequate furniture and ad hoc cabinets for archiving files and files and registers, in order to preserve the confidentiality of information.
The health facility will be equipped with the necessary equipment (refrigerator for storing medicine /sterilizers / first aid).
Adequate furniture has been foreseen for the common library: tables, chairs and wardrobes, as well as books and stories of various types, various educational media and computers.
The warehouses and feeding equipment will be adequately equipped, with shelves, cabinets, appliances and with the necessary ventilation systems for the storage process.
The kitchen and restaurant will be furnished with the necessary equipment and necessary tools to prepare, store and serve food, according to health needs, with cooling and heating devices and tools for each child, ensuring that the kitchen utensils are made of stainless steel.
The home will be equipped with tools and equipment for cleaning, washing and ironing.
The furniture will be in wood and will be guaranteed the maintenance, repair and renewal works to be periodically carried out in order to ensure the possibility of use.
The internal decorations of the house will be pleasant and the mural painting cheerful for the children, and free of harmful substances.
All safety, rescue and protection measures and precautions will be guaranteed for all children / young people of the Oasis of the Pietà, inside and outside the building, and will be adequately highlighted.
DESCRIPTION OF THE BUILDING
The building of the Oasis of the Pietà Orphanage has been designed to meet the following conditions:
a. To be a family residential building aimed to reproduce as much as possible an environment similar to that of the family of origin by meeting the needs of family warmth of children and young people and providing them with security, attention and respect for their privacy.
b. To be a structure suitable for its purpose and flexible in response to the changing needs of children (such as the emergence of cases of physical disability).
c. To guarantee health conditions, such as ventilation and natural lighting in all living and living spaces, as well as guaranteeing the supply of drinking water and sanitation.
d. To guarantee emergency exits (in case of fire - earthquake etc.), to guarantee structures of safety gates aimed to facilitate the exit and entry of vehicles and a whole series of other safety measures for children against possible risks.
e. To ensure the presence of places necessary for children to practice soft sports, recreational and cultural activities.
THE BUILDING COMPLEX AND DIMENSIONAL PARAMETERS
The new building will be located in a lot of 6,429.77 square meters, as shown in the documentation issued by the Egyptian Authorities. The building will occupy a surface of approx. 1,994.00 square meters on different floors and with different heights.
SWORK PROGRESS TRACKING
As can be seen from the photos, in about a year and a half a huge part of the construction was finished as the underground, the first floor, the second, and the third floor.
It was decided to add a fourth floor to the project to increase the capacity of the House by 33%. Thus the maximum capacity would reach 300 children.
We have finished the columns of the fourth floor and we are awaiting the final authorizations to finish it together with the Dome of the Chapel dedicated to Blessed Carlo Acutis.
We have therefore reached 90% of the concrete structure and 45% of the entire project.