CAFOD Lobbies Parliament on the Eradication of Poverty

In the morning there were arranged activities and speakers, together with a wide range of constituents sharing their reasons why they care about development and support public spending on aid, all getting prepared to meet individual MP’s later in the afternoon. Help and support was provided for those who had not met their MP before.
One representative invited to attend by CAFOD was Tony Threlfall; his report follows:

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Tony Threlfall with Michelle Donelan MP

“My MP for Chippenham, Michelle Donelan (Conservative), hadn’t replied to any of my phone calls and emails. However, there is a process called green carding where you report to the central lobby in the Houses of Parliament and request a meeting. She arrived within 10 minutes! She confirmed the government’s commitment to maintain the 0.7% of our GDP for the life of this Parliament. I invited her to meet the Syrian Refugees and their families at St. Patricks Church Hall where we teach them English, with the intention of giving her the opportunity to value the UK contribution and to appreciate and come to understand the experiences of the refugees.

It was also a good opportunity to ensure she knows and supports the work of CAFOD. Our centre is only 50 yards from her constituency office. I have been asked to drop possible dates and times at her office which I did. I also spoke with Jeremy Corbyn at Portcullis House where other CAFOD and other aid agency volunteers were meeting their MPs. He was happy to support our efforts and be photographed with the volunteers.

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Tony Threlfall outside Parliament

Find out more here about how you can help CAFOD campaign on vital issues.

CAFOD Lobbies Parliament on the Eradication of Poverty

On 17th October, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, CAFOD organised a Parliamentary lobby to speak up for the UK’s crucial role tackling poverty around the world. The event was focussed on constituencies where there are either new MPs, or MPs who especially need to hear their constituents’ support for UK government spending on aid. The Constituency of Bath (MP, Wera Hobhouse: Lib Dem) was one, and the constituency for Chippenham, (MP Michelle Donelan: Conservative) was another.

In the morning there were arranged activities and speakers, together with a wide range of constituents sharing their reasons why they care about development and support public spending on aid, all getting prepared to meet individual MP’s later in the afternoon. Help and support was provided for those who had not met their MP before.

Lobby2

Tony Threlfall with Michelle Donelan MP

“My MP for Chippenham, Michelle Donelan (Conservative), hadn’t replied to any of my phone calls and emails. However, there is a process called green carding where you report to the central lobby in the Houses of Parliament and request a meeting. She arrived within 10 minutes! She confirmed the government’s commitment to maintain the 0.7% of our GDP for the life of this Parliament. I invited her to meet the Syrian Refugees and their families at St. Patricks Church Hall where we teach them English, with the intention of giving her the opportunity to value the UK contribution and to appreciate and come to understand the experiences of the refugees.  It was also a good opportunity to ensure she knows and supports the work of CAFOD. Our centre is only 50 yards from her constituency office. I have been asked to drop possible dates and times at her office which I did. I also spoke with Jeremy Corbyn at Portcullis House where other CAFOD and other aid agency volunteers were meeting their MPs. He was happy to support our efforts and be photographed with the volunteers.

Find out more here about how you can help CAFOD campaign on vital issues.

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Tony Threlfall outside Parliament

Weston super Mare parishioners transform communities this Harvest season

Corpus Christi parishioners have been fundraising to help poor farmers in San Salvador grow enough food to eat. On Friday, 6th October 2017, churchgoers from Corpus Christi parish, Weston super Mare raised £885.45 for CAFOD’s annual Harvest appeal. The parish added more from its tithe fund so the Parish in the end sent a cheque for £1219.14 to CAFOD.

The very first Family Fast Day was held 57 years ago, on Friday 11 March 1960, when funds were raised for a mother and baby clinic in the Dominican Republic. This year, Harvest Fast Day was held on Friday, 6th October 2017 in support of CAFOD who are working in partnership with a local support group, Solidaridad CVX.   Together CAFOD and Solidaridad CVX are working with local farmers by providing them with training.  Importantly, native seeds used generations ago are being introduced. These indigenous seeds are strong and fertile having evolved in this region over millennia to be able to grow well in the warm, rainy San Salvador climate. This ensures that the farmers will be able to harvest crops, enabling them to gain the self-confidence and ability to provide their families both with food and a modest income.

Alongside fundraising, the parish is also planting seeds to symbolise their growing relationship with farmers overseas, like those in the Latin American country of El Salvador.

EL SALVADOR-SEEDS

These seeds are strong and able to grow in the warm, rainy climate, ensuring that farmers are able to harvest crops, and with that, the surety that they will be able to provide for their families’

The organiser, Chris Davies says “This is a tribute to God’s bounty and is also to the benefit of an extremely worthy cause”.

CAFOD’s representative here in the Clifton Diocese Elizabeth Baldwin said:

“Harvest is a time of abundance of both crops and of life in the community. This event has shown the abundance of compassion in Weston.  Its kindness will help communities in El Salvador and around the world.

“Archbishop Oscar Romero, who was assassinated after he spoke out for the poor people of El Salvador, said: ‘We plant the seeds that one day will grow’. Our Harvest appeal is about literally planting seeds but also about standing with people to ensure that they can prosper. This wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of communities like Weston super Mare.”

gifts before the altar

Corpus Christi parish in Weston-Super-Mare had an abundant Harvest Fast Day this year with great generosity from the parish’

You can still donate to the Lent Appeal at cafod.org.uk/harvest