10 million people face hunger, due to the devastating drought rippling through Ethiopia. Through our local partners we are able to reach the most vulnerable with urgent supplies.
Some of our supporters in England and Wales have been supporting communities in Ethiopia for a number of years through the Connect2 Ethiopia scheme. This project links a parish to a village where money raised has been helping people become self-sufficient.
For six years Henry and Nuala Rosenvinge, have organised their own plant and cake sale for CAFOD. This year’s event raised an incredible £2,500, which was especially poignant given the heartbreaking drought in Ethiopia. Here Henry writes about how one neighbourhood connects to another.
I retired as a doctor 11 years ago and then my wife and I went out to Harari, to visit my daughter, working in an AIDS clinic. We were really moved by what we saw out there and so I got the Parish signed up to Connect2.
Fast forward six years to the moment we all realised we had smashed last year’s target by £500 and as you can imagine we were over the moon. Especially as the weather was so wet and we predicted a much smaller turnout. Nethertheless our 21 relentless volunteers powered through.
The fact that we have so much water made it really rather special because we could at least use our abundance of rain to aid those who so cruelly have none.
We only get this chance once a year so everybody is fully committed and we sold nearly 1,000 plants in two hours. I am so grateful to all of our village members and Parish volunteers.
If every plant and cake we sell can help those affected by the terrifying droughts, then every moment is worth it, for the parish, the volunteers and our little village community.
Jill and Mel, two incredibly enthusiastic volunteers refused to let the rain deter them, they set up a cosy burrow for the customers, a grotto filled with cakes, bakes, flapjacks and bread.
Another aspect which means quite a lot to me, as my wife Nuala, pointed out, was how event-goers kept telling us how much they had learnt and how they were really interested in getting behind a similar project.
Putting on an event like this is what it is about, community spirit, people, from babies to eighty-year-olds’ all coming together to help each other, it is the best way to fundraise and we are all supporting a community on the other side of the world.
As Ethiopia experiences the worst droughts in decades, brought about by some of the strongest El Niño weather events, CAFOD has been scaling up its emergency response work to reach more people in desperate need.