Here is our weekly update of coming online events.
Please click on the links to book a place or see www.cafod.org.uk/onlinetalks for a full list.
TOMORROW – Tuesday 11 August 7 – 8 pm CAFOD Live with Deputy Head of Africa James Marchant.
Join our Deputy Head of Africa, James Marchant to hear about our work across Africa and how they are implementing lessons from previous Ebola outbreaks.
Also this week…
Thursday 13 August 11 am-12 noon
What does a net zero world look like?
Missed one of our online events?
Recordings are available of past online meetings, just visit www.cafod.org.uk/onlinetalks and click ‘Watch recordings’.
Hope you can join us online to learn more.
Stay safe and well.
Light of new hope
God of refuge,
hear our prayer
as we hold the people of Beirut
in our hearts at this time.
Fill us with compassion
and move us to reach out in love.
In your mercy,
bring comfort to those who mourn,
healing to those who are injured,
shelter to those who are homeless
sustenance to those who hunger.
Give strength to those who are working
to rebuild shattered lives,
and protect those who are vulnerable
especially in a time of coronavirus.
Lead us in your ways
so that together we may bring
the light of new hope
wherever there is destruction and despair.
We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.
It’s tougher to be constant
when the cameras are gone,
moved on to the latest celebrity scandal.
God of all time and of this moment, help us
to be present in thought, word and action
to our sisters and brothers in need –
holding their concerns as our own.
Just as you remembered the suffering of Sarah and Abraham
and heard the cry of your people in slavery;
just as Jesus recognised our hunger
and dwells with us in spirit and in word;
so help us to embody your steadfast love,
as we remember your people in Lebanon.
We pray in Jesus’ name,
who grieved with Martha and Mary,
and called Lazarus to fullness of life.
We are so excited to bring you another night of family fun with our online quiz night, in aid of CAFOD’s Coronavirus Appeal.
Tonight (Friday 7 August) we are inviting you to gather your friends and family for the CAFOD Family Quiz.
Starting at 6:30 pm, there will be multiple rounds with a variety of topics which are suitable for all ages.
It’s a great chance to have a socially distanced competition – why not invite your neighbours to play along too?
All funds raised will go towards CAFOD’s Coronavirus Appeal, which is helping some of the world most vulnerable communities tackle Coronavirus.
Don’t forget to register here: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/7577422229936972815?source=Twitter
Maria Elena Arana, CAFOD’s Campaign Outreach Coordinator, shares three moments of CAFOD’s debt campaigning history and how you can get involved today.
1997: Fair Deal for the Poor
I started work in CAFOD’s campaign team back in summer 1991. CAFOD then was in the third year of the environment campaign Renewing the Earth.
During the 1990s, CAFOD supported policy forums that were looking at the impact of debt in increasing poverty in many developing countries across the world, but particularly in sub Saharan Africa. These issues became a key component of the CAFOD Fair Deal for the Poor campaign launched in 1997.
Today, CAFOD still calling for debt cancellation for the poorest countries, sign the petition now.
1998: Jubilee 2000
On 18 May 1998, the same day at the FA Cup final that year, a human chain of over 70,000 campaigners surrounded a meeting of leaders from the world’s richest countries – the G8 – in Birmingham.
By the end of the Jubilee 2000 campaign, over 300,000 CAFOD supporters had signed the Jubilee 2000 petition.
Twenty-three of the world’s poorest countries have received debt cancellation totalling over US $87 billion. As a result, spending on public services rose in all these countries: an average increase of around 40 per cent on education and a massive 70 per cent on healthcare.
2000-2004: Debt cancellation in Africa
When primary-school fees in Uganda were cancelled due to debt relief, the number of children enrolled in primary schools more than doubled, to more than five million, over the next four years.
Enrolments doubled again in the four years after that.
Twenty million more African children entered school thanks to debt cancellation and targeted aid increases between 2000 and 2004. Money freed up through debt cancellation helped build classrooms and provide training for teachers.
2020: Speak up to cancel the debt
In April 2020, the G20 group of the world’s largest economies announced that, due to the coronavirus pandemic, over 70 countries could stop making debt payments over the next eight months to the countries they owe.
This would save around $12 billion. This is a welcome step, however, debts must be cancelled – not just suspended.
Sign our petition asking the Prime Minister to cancel all debt payments by developing countries due in 2020 and 2021 so that countries can spend money on much needed healthcare rather than debt repayments.
This week, thanks to the generosity of the UK public, the Disasters Emergency Committee – of which CAFOD is a member – Coronavirus Appeal has raised an incredible £10 million to help those living in the most fragile states.
The DEC Coronavirus Appeal will help the most vulnerable people in six of the world’s most fragile states: Yemen and Syria; Somalia, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo; and Afghanistan.
In Syria, our local partners on the ground are reporting urgent concerns about the risks of the virus spreading, as vulnerable people are unable to take the basic measures to protect themselves.
Mustafa, 28, a frontline worker supported by CAFOD, lives in a camp outside Idlib with displaced people.
He explained how they are preparing for what he calls ‘an explosion of coronavirus’ in the camps. He said:
“My heart is beating so hard; we are expecting an explosion of coronavirus in the camps.
The coming days are really critical for us.
“Doctors are preparing for the spread of the virus. People live in large overcrowded settlements in tents with maybe 12 people and no access to clean water. It will be a catastrophe. Disaster. Please help them.”
Three Welsh cyclists – two of which now work for the NHS – have called on the people of Wales to join the Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC) Coronavirus Appeal, which is working to help the world’s most vulnerable communities threatened by Covid-19.
In a video message Rachel Draper, a coach at Welsh Cycling and former double World Champion cyclist, was joined by retired cycling husband and wife, Olympian, Ciara Oliva (nee Horne) and Commonwealth champion, Lewis Oliva – who now both work for the NHS – to call for support of the DEC appeal in Wales.
“The Coronavirus pandemic has touched many people in our towns and communities across Wales,” explained Ciara, who was an Olympian at Rio 2016, European Champion, a double World Cup winner and World Championship medallist.
“Sadly, families have lost loved ones. We’ve had to adapt to a new way of doing things, working, shopping, exercising, but perhaps most of all we have missed being able to get together with our closest friends and family.
“But we know from our own experience, here at home, that simple steps, taking simple precautions makes a huge difference.”
Now, a full-time physiotherapist with the NHS, Ciara explained how the appeal shows the dire need in poorest countries around the world.
In countries like Yemen, Syria and Sudan, families who have already had to flee violent conflict, now they face the new threat of coronavirus, without the precautions to protect themselves.
Ciara continued: “In some countries, volunteers use bikes to travel out to very remote communities to give them vital information about to how to prevent infection from Covid-19. As elite cyclists, we salute their effort, commitment, and determination to get the job done and save lives.
“Here in Wales, we have been told, time and again, how important it is to wash our own hands frequently, to stop the spread of Coronavirus.
“It’s easy for us because we can turn on the tap at home and out comes clean water. So clean, we can drink it. But in many countries around the world, the very thing that is essential for handwashing – clean water – just isn’t available.”
Cyclist Lewis Oliva, who spent six years with British cycling, winning medals at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, World Cup and European and Commonwealth Games, before going onto study medicine at Cardiff University, added:
“We know the charities that make up the DEC have unique expertise and when those charities come together to launch an appeal, things must be serious.
“Charities like CAFOD, a member of the DEC, are already on the ground in places like Syria, doing what they can, but they need our help.
“The need is urgent. But together, we can help families protect themselves with water, soap, handwashing stations and healthcare information.”
Whatever you can give, however small, it will make a huge difference to help us reach and protect the most vulnerable people who have already lost everything.
Read the lettersent to the Prime Minister on 15 June – signed by The Climate Coalition, including, Christine Allen (CAFOD, Director).
“Ministers have said a lot about drawing up recovery plans which recognise that helping the economy means creating green jobs and investing in measures to protect our common home. Now we need the Prime Minister to turn words into actions.
“As we emerge from this crisis, we must put in place the policies to halt the climate crisis, as well as cancel debt payments for the world’s poorest countries as they deal with the effects of both of these emergencies.”