World Humanitarian Day – a day with Syrian refugees

Each year since 2009, World Humanitarian Day has been held on 19 August to mobilise support for people affected by crises around the world and to pay tribute to all those who risk their lives in humanitarian service. Yadviga Clark, CAFOD’s Emergency Programme Officer for the Syria Crisis response, shares her experiences of visiting Syrian refugees that have settled in Lebanon.

Conflict so often affects innocent people – many flee for their lives, families are torn apart and displaced from their homes, children are traumatised and taken out of school, and aid workers risk their lives to care for people caught up in the violence.

Pray for all those affected by conflict

Last month I spent a day with Syrian refugee children who are living in an informal settlement in the Bekaa valley, Lebanon.

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Bishop John’s last couple of days in Niger

Bishop John Arnold, CAFOD’s Chair of Trustees, has now returned from visiting Niger. He visited CAFOD partners there and our Hands On Doutchi project. Read more about this trip here. 

Bishop John Arnold, CAFOD Chair of Trustees
Bishop John Arnold at a UK event in 2016

Hands On is a special series of CAFOD projects that allows you to support a specific community with a project. Our latest project in Bolivia is still open for new supporters to join. 

Day five – return to the city

Today was the long journey back to the capital city of Niamey. The journey was certainly long but by no means tedious and I keep reminding myself of the privilege of being here and experiencing the life of the people and a place which could not be much further removed from life in Manchester.

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Bishop John visits Hands On Doutchi

The Chair of CAFOD’s Trustees, Bishop John Arnold, is visiting Niger to see our projects, including our Hands On Doutchi project. Bishop John is also keen to build stronger links with the local Catholic Church.

Children from Doutch waving
Everyone in Doutchi was very excited for the Hands On project.

Hands On is a special series of CAFOD projects that allows you to support a specific community with a project. Our latest project in Bolivia is still open for new supporters. Find out more about Hands On in Bolivia

Bishop John’s first blog describes his initial impressions; he has been travelling out to see projects over the last two days…

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Hands On: Water returns to Kitui

Africa-Kitui-Hands-On-community-wavingAbout this project: The community of Kitui in Kenya have spent two years working on a project to re-sculpt their landscape and bring back a sustainable supply of water. This has all been possible thanks to generous supporters in the UK. Our next project is beginning soon – find out more and get involved.

Over the last two years we have planted trees, dug terraces, built dams and learned everything necessary to bring safe water back to the Kitui community.

People’s lives will now be transformed – so many opportunities will open up now that people here don’t have to walk for many miles each day just to have enough to drink. Continue reading “Hands On: Water returns to Kitui”

Hands On Kitui: Into the final weeks

As we enter the last few weeks of our project, everywhere we look we are greeted by signs of transformation. Our dam and wells are filling, people’s gardens and our community farm are starting to produce harvests, and the landscape is so much greener than just two years ago.

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Hands On Kitui: Looking to the future

About Hands On: Hands On is a special series of CAFOD projects, that are funded directly by supporters. Hands On Kitui is our first project, and although this is coming to an end, our newest project community are in need of support.

Find out more and get involved

February 2016 Kitui update

While work is continuing on the main dam and the other final improvements, as we approach the end of our project we can’t help but think further into the future.

With this in mind, some of our next steps will be to prepare everyone here for the years ahead, to ensure our successes continue for generations.

We will be providing training for the local management committee on project management and team-building, and working with local primary schools to set up a conservation club.

If you’re looking for inspiration, reflection and prayers this Lent, our Lent calendar has daily updates for the whole season. Continue reading “Hands On Kitui: Looking to the future”

Hands On Kitui: Happy New Year to all our supporters

Hello and a very happy New Year from everyone in Kitui. The end of our two year project is just a few months away and so we are hard at work ensuring that our project here will be a great success.

Those of you who are sent Side by Side will have received your special DVD – for those of you who are not, Here is this personal message from everyone in Kitui.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7cgErVEeSg?rel=0&controls=0&showinfo=0&w=560&h=315]

If you’d like to send a message back, please leave one in the comments! Continue reading “Hands On Kitui: Happy New Year to all our supporters”

Hands On Kitui: Signs of success

Hands On Kitui is the first of our special series of projects that allows donors to give monthly and directly support a particular community. Find out how you can help the community of Altiplano in Bolivia.

Work continues at great pace as we hurry to get the Musosya dam ready for the coming rains. One fantastic piece of news is that our reservoir is now holding water, which had been in the ground following the previous rains. This means that even during dry periods the community here is able to access clean water for their households – a wonderful achievement.

We would also be delighted to take this time to wish you a happy and peaceful Christmas. Please do keep Kitui in your thoughts at this joyous time, we have made so much progress thanks to your kindness.

Our beautiful Advent calendar provides space every day to reflect and pray.

Progress and project highlights this month

 

Did you know?

Gabions are wire cages filled with rocks, which sit across tributaries to the reservoir. When it rains, they will reduce the speed of the streams and will trap silt, stopping it running into the reservoir itself.

Hands On Kitui: the final countdown

We are now approaching the final stretch of our exciting project here in Kitui, progress has been fantastic up to this point and work is now firmly focused on the main Musosya dam.

We need to clear all of the silt and debris from the reservoir before any more rains come – it’s a real race against time and everyone is working harder than ever to ensure we are ready in time.

Once the Musosya dam is complete we will begin to see a truly transformed Kitui, and it wouldn’t be happening without your kind support – thanks you so much, please do keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

P.S. If you’re looking for ethical Christmas presents, our range of great World Gifts transform the lives of people living in poverty, as well as giving your loved one a beautiful card to open on Christmas morning.

Progress and project highlights this month

Did you know?

Our new community farm will produce kale, spinach, tomatoes, coriander and onions. We’re building a strong fence around it to keep goats and other animals out!

Hands On: Small things that make a big difference

After the sand and check dams came through the rains in good shape, and with the fifth sand dam almost complete, we’ve been looking at some additional work which may be possible here in Kitui, and have decided to build some off-take wells. These are connected to the sand dams – water flows out of the dam and into the well, which is easier to use for collecting water.
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