Social Centers

 

When taking on new forms of apostolate let the brothers show special care for people who are deprived of ordinary pastoral care because of the conditions of their life: the young during decisive moment of their Christian life…burdened with financial pressures, or those harassed by hostility or radical prejudice (const 147.3). Social work in its organized form is restricted to two centers in the Province. Thus, we have Padua Social Centre at Valiathura and Tillery Social Service in Quilon. Poor and deserving girls are given gainful employment at these centers. Attached to Tillery Social Service we have Assisi Press started in 1939 in view of imparting Catholic Literature. The Press is successful in its mission ever since the beginning and it is one of the leading Presses.

Tillery Social Center

Tillery social centre was started by Father Jacob OFM Cap the then Superior of Tillery Friary. Fr. Jacob entrusted Bros Robin Daniel (who was doing his college studies) the day to day running of the centre. Bros Robin Daniel continued in that position for full five years. The centre had no building then. It was run in a small outer house of Mr. Earnest Stephen, the Grand Father of Roy who died some time back in an accident. Main product was Note books for which Bros Robin Daniel used to go and get orders from different schools and shops. Once the books are manufactured, they were stored in the present parlor rooms of the friary. The next year, around 1968-69, the present building was put up and the centre began to function in a more organized way. In addition to the manufacture of note books, we had also units of Candle making, Xmas card manufacture and Star making. Quite a number of girls from Tillery were employed. And there was good demand for our products.

In the initial stage there were the production of baskets, chair, umbrella, snacks and bag. For all these things the frames were from the Calvary ashram. Later Bros. Isidore and Francis Panavila took charge of the social center. From Bro. Francis onwards there was only a single director for the Assisi press and the social centre. At present Fr. Albert Koilparambil is in charge of it. Almost 25 workers are there in the social center and the main activities are Note book making, Ledger and register, Binding, Candle making, Bag making, Vestments stitching. The social center renders economical support and upbringing of the poor families of the surroundings

Villa Padua Social Center

In 1961, the bishop of Trivandrum invited capuchins to valiathure and he provided the land and building which was a part of the harbor becomes Villa Padua ashram. Fr. Jacob Acharuparambil was the first superior. He was very lenient towards the poor and he wanted to do something for the poor. After seeing the poverty of the families of fisherman, he thought to start a social centre for them. Then he met Bishop Peter periera and got the consent and cooperation from him to start the social centre. Government also co-operated with him and they provided a hall for social centre. That was the beginning of the social centre and Fr. Jacob was the director of the social centre. Thus he started to render job for the poor women.

The social centre named as Padua social centre stood for the upliftment for the poor. There were more than 100 women working at that time. The main activities were giving training for tailoring, making host and particles, notebooks, paper cover, chair with plastic wires, umbrella, Christmas cards. Fr. Jacob was very much committed towards his activities here. He was appointed as the then general definitor and provincial and later he became the bishop of Trivandrum diocese.

Then Fr. Robin Daniel became the director of the social centre. Like Fr. Jacob, he also stood for the upliftment of the poor. Then the number of worker increased to 200. At the same time, there was a Padua children's care unit meant for the primary education of the children and a society formed for the women from the people of fishermen. In 2002, Fr. Robin Daniel became the provincial of St. Francis province, then Fr. John Fernandez, became the director of the social centre. His service was also a remarkable event in the history of social centre. It was he who introduced a unit for the note books. Later on Fr. Varghese, Fr. George, Fr. Sunil, Fr. Luscious, Fr. Antony, Fr. Marian were the directors of the social centre. Fr. Aldrin is the present director of the social centre. Till now they are doing a wonderful service for the upbringing of the poor.

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Tillery Social Service Centre,
Tillery, Kollam,
Kerala.

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Villa Padua Social Centre
Trivandrum,
Kerala

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