Values, Mission & Objective
Perceiving migration as an opportunity, the Scalabrini Centre is committed to alleviating poverty and promoting development in the Western Cape while fostering integration between migrants, refugees and South Africans. In providing our assistance we advocate respect for human rights and use a holistic approach that considers all basic needs.
- Inspired by the teachings and actions of John Baptist Scalabrini, the Scalabrini Centre offers a welcoming environment that is open to all and where each individual is valued and treated with dignity.
- Guided by a sense of humility we promote respect for cultural diversity.
- To foster the cultural, social and economic integration of migrants, refugees and South Africans into local society
The Scalabrini Centre originally takes its name from John Baptist Scalabrini, the Bishop of Piacenza, who founded the Scalabrini order in 1887 to care for the welfare of migrants. Today the Scalabrini Fathers specifically care for migrants, refugees, and seafarers, interpreting migration as a meeting place for peoples of different cultures and nationalities. The Congregation and their various lay organisations can be found in 24 nations across Asia, Australia, Africa, Europe and the Americas.
Scalabrinians care for the needs of migrants and refugees practically through homes for refugees, deported aliens and orphaned migrant children, seamen’s centres, and villages for elderly migrants. Additionally, research is conducted through Centres for Migration Studies in New York, Paris, Rome, Buenos Aires, Sao Paulo, Manila and Australia. These Centres study the movement of populations around the world, publishing peer reviewed journals and magazines and also conducting radio and television programs for migrants.
The Scalabrini Fathers have been providing welfare services in Cape Town to displaced communities since 1994. Starting off as religious assistance to different communities of migrants, the Fathers were soon confronted with the problems experienced by refugees from Angola, the Congos, Rwanda, Burundi and other African communities, and it became necessary to offer more tangible assistance. Starting with the distribution of food and clothing under the Welcoming Programme in 1998, expanding to include a development agenda in 2003 followed by the establishment of Lawrence House, a home for abandoned and orphaned refugee children in 2005, the Fathers formed a secular non-government organisation, the Scalabrini Centre of Cape Town (SCCT) to run these projects.