Somerset Campaigners meet with MPs to ‘speak up’ about Climate Change

A Taunton man has lobbied his MP as part of a national action to raise awareness of climate issues in parliament.  Doug Lowe from Taunton, who is a volunteer campaigner with CAFOD, met his local MP Rebecca Pow to speak about climate issues important to his local area, and about issues that would affect communities around the world.  

Doug said: “I had a very good meeting with Rebecca Pow; she did not know much about CAFOD so I gave her some information about what CAFOD does.” 

Doug Lowe with Rebecca Pow, Conservative PPC for Taunton

During Valentine’s week, people across the country met with their MPs, wearing green hearts as part of a Climate Coalition campaign to raise awareness of the things we face to lose to climate change. Doug shared with his MP a factsheet on renewable energy – which can be used to tackle help climate change – and ‘turn me off’ stickers to be placed on electrical appliances to remind people to save energy.  “She was very happy to wear a handmade green heart that I gave her, and I am hoping she might put the energy stickers around the office and at home, which I also pointed out to her,” continued Doug

The Climate Coalition is the UK’s largest group of people dedicated to action on climate change and limiting its impact on the people, places and life we love at home in the UK and around the world, including the world’s poorest countries. Together with Stop Climate Chaos in both Wales and Scotland it combines over 15 million people from all parts of the UK.

Big things are happening this summer too; people in all corners of the country are preparing to Speak Up on climate and energy to their newly elected MPs from 1-9 July. This is your opportunity to make sure that the concerns of the world’s poorest people are one of the first things on your MP’s agenda, just a few weeks after they have been elected.

CAFOD is inviting people to organise or attend an event during this week in July and to invite your newly elected MP to attend. From nature walks to tea parties to a picnic after Mass, there are no limits to how you can get those first conversations about energy started. See here how you can be involved in this important work.

 

Christ the King Primary School fundraise for CAFOD

On Monday May 15th, CAFOD Schools Volunteer Clara Nickols visited Christ the King Primary school to be presented with a cheque for the funds collected on behalf of the CAFOD for Lent appeal.

The staff and children had used the Lent primary resources provided by CAFOD which included a Lent calendar, suggestions for a Lent assembly and loads of fundraising ideas to grab children’s imagination. These resources enabled them to tell the story of Florence from Zambia and how her life has been transformed by a little fish called Bob.

Clara said about the visit: “It went very well.  The pupils know me now and everyone enjoyed my short thank you speech.  Dee Higgins, the School Chaplain, made a certificate to give me of the money raised. The school did so well – £1000 raised for CAFOD!

Dee has outlined that the school is interested in the Power to Be assembly and campaign in September and are looking forward to another possible visit from Clara then.

Parishioners from Christ The King Parish take part in a refugee pilgrimage.

Parishioners from Christ The King in Thornbury gathered in Porch House, their 15th century hall, to take part in a refugee pilgrimage event, which was led by CAFOD’s Community Participation Coordinator, Liz Baldwin.

 

Thanks to the organisers!

Liz presented an overview of CAFOD’s work in support of refugees, both in the Middle East and in reception centres in Europe, together with an update from Syria, where CAFOD partners continue to provide help to families in exceptionally difficult circumstances. She then led us through the ‘pilgrimage’ itself, based on a CAFOD Refugee liturgy, including prayer and reflection from across the

Borderlands, the Bristol-based charity working with refugees and asylum seekers then helped us to focus on what is being done locally.  The two speakers, Caroline and Charlotte, gave us a positive picture of the help that they provide.

 

In return the refugees provide their skills and gifts. Together, this provides and enables a small but extremely valuable centre of support and hope.

Over tea and cake at the end, we discussed plans for Thornbury Churches Together to commit on-going support for Borderlands.

From which countries do refugees come?

 

We were encouraged by these talks, and the efforts made locally more widely, by CAFOD and its partners to support refugees.

 

It was good to feel so encouraged in the face of news that can seem so negative at times.

Thank you to Liz for leading us through such an encouraging afternoon.

Members of other local churches were also present