“Change is possible. But it cannot be left to politicians alone to bring it about. It needs all of us.”
Those were the words of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales in their 2010 statement: Choosing the Common Good.
The symbols of campaigns for change – the badges and t-shirts, the wrist bands and looped ribbons – are all around us in today’s society. They are part of our culture and identity.
But as the Catholic community looks back on 50 years of campaigning against international poverty and injustice with CAFOD, there is not one defining or unifying symbol; for it is not one campaign moment, wristband or slogan that call us to action, but rather our shared faith, hope and love. Continue reading
Joe Howell (centre) with the other CAFOD volunteers at Greenbelt
Joe Howell shares his experience of campaigning with CAFOD at Greenbelt Festival 2011. Read on for details on how you can volunteer at Greenbelt this year…
As a liberal Christian arts, faith and justice festival, Greenbelt is perhaps not something I would have come across on my own. That said I am incredibly glad that I did and, having spent four days campaigning with a group of CAFOD volunteers, I was blown away by the incredible atmosphere at the 2011 festival.
Being a geography student at university, climate change is an issue I have studied and am passionate about as it is already affecting communities in the developing world.
This week I turned 28, and am beginning to feel that I’m at a crossroads in my life. I’m not old, obviously, but I’m not that young either.
It’s a good age to look back at what I have done so far (growing up in Paris, going to university, starting my professional life, getting familiar with the British culture etc.) and to start thinking about the future.
In a month the Rio+20 summit will start in Brazil. Also known as the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, it marks 20 years since the first Earth Summit took place in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. Like for me, it’s a good opportunity to reflect on what has been achieved for our planet and to discuss the future we want to see.
Ask your MP to support a greener, fairer world > Continue reading
Filed under Brazil, CAFOD
“Water is life,” said Sister Eunice, filling up my cup on a hot afternoon in Bolgatanga, North Ghana. And we could definitely see that. Bolgatanga is a place that sees intermittent rain for only a brief period each year, evident in the vast dry landscape.
The harsh conditions mean there is no grass and few trees, and the only crops that survive are millet and groundnuts; that is, if the rains last long enough for them to grow.
My trip was part of the Step into the Gap project, a partnership between CAFOD and the Society of the Holy Child Jesus. I am one of five CAFOD ‘gappers’ across the UK, who work in schools and youth centres exploring faith and justice issues with young people. Our work is enriched by having an overseas experience; witnessing and learning about development first-hand. Continue reading
Everyone seems obsessed by the freezing temperatures that have reached the UK recently. But I can’t help but thinking: well, it is winter after all, isn’t it normal to be cold?
Yet at Christmas the mild weather was at the centre of many family discussions, often leading to a joke about global warming and the fact that it wasn’t such a bad thing.
I was talking to a colleague this week about her recent trip to Southern Africa when I was struck by the words of Ricy, headman of a village in Zambia where CAFOD works: “Climate change is already affecting us. It’s not something we read about in the papers like you might do in England. It’s a problem that we are living and breathing every single day”.
Support CAFOD’s Thirst for Change campaign >> Continue reading