1660 Ms. Michele Rochefort's Inspiring Visit to Don Bosco,Wadala (West)

Date: 27th May 2024

Location: Centre for Empowerment, Wadala (West), Mumbai

Ms. Michele Rochefort and her team received a traditional welcome upon their arrival at the Centre for Empowerment. They were greeted with an Aarti, adorned with garlands, and presented with a flower pot as a gesture of hospitality. Fr. George Miranda, Executive Director of DBDS, introduced the esteemed guests to the audience, expressing heartfelt gratitude to AXA Global Services for their unwavering support and trust over the past seven years. After the brief welcome ceremony, three lady students of tailoring classes shared their experience and achievements. Each student spoke passionately about how the training had transformed their lives, enabling them to gain new skills, enhance their confidence, and contribute financially to their families. Their heartfelt testimonies underlined the deep impact  the tailoring classes had on their journey towards self-sufficiency and empowerment. This was followed by speeches from the guests. In her speech, Ms. Rochefort shared personal anecdotes about her own hardships and the relentless commitment required to achieve her personal and professional goals. She conveyed her happiness for the achievements of the women participating in the tailoring skill classes and wished them continued success. Ms. Fathima emphasized the importance of education for children, highlighting its role in securing a bright future.  Mr Dominic thanked the ladies and staff and shared that he is overwhelmed by the hard work done by the ladies. Fr. James Nigrel, Rector of Don Bosco Wadala, expressed his gratitude towards the AXA team for their continued support of Don Bosco's social initiatives. As a token of appreciation, the women from the audience presented mementos to Ms. Rochefort, Ms. Fathima, Mr. Dominic, and Ms. Alphee. Ms. Rochefort, in turn, distributed gift boxes containing stitching and tailoring aids and materials to the participants.

The event was meticulously coordinated by Ms. Surekha Pednekar, Coordinator of the Centre for Empowerment.

In his closing address, Fr. George Miranda once again thanked Ms. Rochefort and the AXA team for their support. He also expressed appreciation for the efforts of the Wadala house and the social work team in their contributions to the community.

Following the event at the Centre for Empowerment, the guests proceeded to the DBDS-Matunga premises. Here, they engaged in various sports activities with children from nearby slums. Mr. Dominic played football while Ms. Alphee joined in a game of cricket. The interaction with the children was a highlight of the visit, creating memorable moments for all involved. The guests also distributed goodies to the children, bringing smiles to their faces.