El Salvador – the heartache and the hope

Last year, a group of CAFOD volunteers and local representatives went to El Salvador. In an online talk today they shared their incredible experiences, including our very own CAFOD Volunteer from Bath, Irene Prentice.

El Salvador is a country with a turbulent history: Despite the civil war in the country ending in January 1992, poverty, high unemployment and gang violence still make life very difficult, especially for women and young people.

Farming communities are struggling to grow their crops on poor land. Climate change is causing more extreme weather in El Salvador with floods, droughts and tropical storms becoming more frequent.

CAFOD has worked with local partners and communities in El Salvador since 1974.

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One of the mothers – Jacqueline with her family – visited by CAFOD volunteers and priests and staff

We are inspired by Saint Oscar Romero and his insistence on the need for peace, justice, equality and respect for human rights.

In El Salvador, our projects focus on agriculture, promoting a culture of peace and justice, and empowering women.

You can see here to watch the webinar, recorded today, featuring the priests and volunteers who visited El Salvador, to learn more about the rich history and our work in the country today.

 

 

How coronavirus is affecting indigenous people in the Amazon

A few weeks ago, we shared the story of Dario Kopenawa Yanomami, an indigenous leader from the Amazon rainforest, and the effect that Coronavirus is having on his community.

He shared how the virus has unfortunately already reached his community and forced some members to leave the village, retreating further into the forest for protection.

Learn more about CAFOD’s projects across Brazil

Dario said: “Today, the Yanomami people are very sad and worried. But we’re going to keep fighting this important battle against coronavirus in our territories.”

Please join us on 11am-12pm, Thursday 2 July, where Cecilia Ilorio, CAFOD’s Country representative for Brazil, will be sharing updates on the situation in the Amazon.

She will speak about how we are working alongside communities to help them prepare for and respond to the threat of the coronavirus pandemic, while also working alongside these communities to help them to safeguard their indigenous lands.

Together, we are working to improve indigenous peoples living conditions, health access and education so they cannot only survive the coronavirus crisis but begin to rebuild and heal.CAFOD Davi and Dario UK visit-29

Above: CAFOD Davi and Dario on their UK visit last year.

Register to join us.

One Climate, One World: Bath takes action

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U Win Myi’s village in Myanmar was struck by Cyclone Nargis in 2008. Now they are involved in a programme to prepare for if another disaster hits.

Last Friday, St John the Evangelist Church, Bath, held an event focused on CAFOD’s One Climate, One World Campaign.

Get involved in One Climate, One World.

CAFOD Parish Contact, Irene Prentice,who ran the event, spoke about Bhutan, a country she has studied for many years. Although Bhutan is not directly supported by CAFOD, Irene showed through this example, the impact of climate change thoughout the world. Here Irene reflects on the event:

‘The first presentation focused on a little known Himalayan country, Bhutan, and illustrated the impacts of global climate change.  In Bhutan, climate change can affect clean drinking water supplies, agriculture, cause floods, the extinction of species, and health issues like heat stress and increased epidemics.

‘However, Bhutan offers a lesson of hope. It is a pioneer in forging a middle path to development that considers the well-being of its people.  Bhutan’s development is based on good governance, the sustainable use and conservation of its resources (water, forests and biodiversity), conserving traditional and spiritual values, giving equal opportunities for social development and balancing this with economic development. The Bhutanese government takes the remarkable view that what is economically profitable may not be morally right. 

‘A second presentation was given by Peter Turner, CAFOD Schools Volunteer. Peter spoke with passion about the experience of a CAFOD volunteer and the need to create a world that is fair with equal opportunities for all, including the world’s poorest. The presentation showed how schools volunteers work with children to help them understand complex issues such as climate change.

‘Inspired by the presentations, group discussions followed.  One group discussion reflected on “Who is my Neighbour” and our responsibility towards the earth as neighbour.  They suggested we can be inspired by the work of St Francis to expand our idea of neighbour to include all of creation.

‘The second group discussed the meaning of “The Common Good” in relation to global business practice. While skepticism was voiced, it was felt that there was a need to re-examine and widen notions of corporate social responsibility of global enterprises.’

This year is an important one for taking action on climate change, join us on June 17th to speak up for the things you love that will be affected by climate change.

Speak up for the love of