José María Vélaz was a Jesuitpriest from Chile who founded Fe y Alegria (Faith and Joy) in 1955 in Caracas, Venezuela. Fe y Alegria is a movement for popular integrated education, with a special mission to provide quality education for the poor. Following a proud tradition of Jesuit education, Vélaz believed that the best way to change society was through education. Vélaz died in 1985, having seen his organisation grow into one of the most important educational movements in the world.
By 2008 there were over 1,300,000 people being formed in institution of Fe y Alegria, in 20 different countries throughout Africa, Europe, South and Central America. There were 2080 different institutions, employing almost 36000 people and over fifty radio stations. The international federation publishes many books, and at a national level, Fe y Alegria publishes many academic journals, magazines and books.
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