CAFOD joins DEC Coronavirus Appeal

CAFOD has joined forces with the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) to help millions of vulnerable people, whose lives are at risk as the coronavirus pandemic spreads – and we are inviting communities and parishes across England and Wales to get involved.DEC Appeal photo

Donate to the DEC Coronavirus Appeal

CAFOD’s Director, Christine Allen, said:

“In the UK, our struggle against coronavirus has entered the next phase, but in many of the world’s poorest communities, the fight has only just begun.”

Millions of families living in crowded camps or makeshift shelters are having to face the coronavirus with little access to running water, soap, or medical aid. Families who have been forced to flee their homes in places like Syria, South Sudan, and the Democratic of Congo, are especially vulnerable.

Christine continued: “In many places around the world there are not enough hospital beds or supplies to treat everyone who falls ill. But promoting handwashing and providing personal protective equipment, health advice and food parcels can make a huge difference. We need your support to reach these communities and help people to cope as best they can when an outbreak of the virus strikes.”

Find out more about the DEC coronavirus appeal

CAFOD is already responding to the crisis.  Since launching its emergency appeal on 30 April, we have scaled up our support to local aid experts across the world. They are helping to provide food and improving handwashing and sanitation facilities.

freddie 3We have had an amazing response from communities across England and Wales and in our Diocese the response has been awesome! From Freddie aged 6 doing his first Half Marathon, Seminarians taking part in the 2.6challenge, 3 parishes have set up JustGiving pages and one our school Heads of RE is swimming 21 miles!

And now, we need your continued support during the DEC appeal to ensure that we can further scale up our support and make sure that no one is beyond the reach of the support they need.  Christine continued:

“It is critical that we act now to reach millions of vulnerable people who have lost everything and no longer have ways of coping.”

Donate now

 

Summer of Hope

As we celebrate the fifth-year anniversary of Laudato Si’, now seems the perfect time to reflect on Pope Francis’ words from his ground-breaking encyclical.

summer of hope imageHis words, calling everyone to hear to ‘the cry of the Earth and the cry of the poor’ seem particularly apt during this time of the coronavirus pandemic, where we have seen communities come together in solidarity to tackle the virus.

And, in the scale of the global pandemic, we are often drawn to thinking that our individual actions can’t make a difference. Yet, Pope Francis reminds us that “all it takes is one good person to restore hope.”

So, this summer, we are calling you and your family to help restore hope in your local and our global community. We are calling on you to be the signs of hope for our world.

What can I do?

Getting involved is easy.

We are inviting everyone to get involved in the Summer of Hope by recreating at home the events you will miss this summer and transforming them into a sign of hope through raising money for CAFOD’s Coronavirus Appeal.

From sports days to summer fairs, we have a whole range of ideas you can reinvent at home in our A-Z of fundraising ideas.

You can hold your socially-distanced event with your family, school community or parish – and make sure to record your efforts on social media, tagging your photos and posts with @cafod #summerofhope.

Fundraising is easy through a JustGiving page and if you’d like any help, just drop us a phone call or email on 077 100 94455  nottingham@cafod.org.uk      You can also donate directly through the CAFOD website.

We can’t wait to see everything you get up to!

Comfort in grief; a personal experience

My granddaughter Leila (7) was staying over at the weekend and on our way to the cinema to see Aladdin she was talking about birthdays and how her birthday is next.  I corrected her and said Uncle Zachary is soon and then it would be Aunty Anna’s etc etc…………………….

So she asks has Aunty Anna got a grave, as she would like to put flowers for her on her birthday. So I said no.  Oh, so she is ashes then?  Where are they? she asks.   At my house, I said.    No further discussion.  She is quiet. Then a minute later she said,  I wish it wouldn’t be Mother’s Day for another 2 years.  Why, I asked.  Because you were so sad on Mother’s Day…………….

grief

Leila with Aunty Anna, Mum

Since the death of my Mum in 2017 and more recently my daughter Anna in November last year, the experiences of journeying  through an expected death and a sudden loss have been challenging in so many ways.  Mum had her funeral planned; who was going to do what, what she was going to wear, hymns, readings etc.  With Anna we were shell shocked and the bureaucracy of death and  planning to bring her home from Edinburgh where she lived; they were tasks to focus on, delaying our real grief till after the funeral.

And so recently, because of my own personal experience, I have been sharing about CAFOD’s award winning project from 2015, that illustrates how no one is beyond reach of  our support; through prayer, through fundraising, through compassion, through partnership, through love.

 Safe & Dignified Burials in Sierra Leone

The BOND Humanitarian Award recognised the courageous service of the more than 800 burial workers who served with SMART, a UK government-funded consortium comprising of World Vision, CAFOD, and Catholic Relief Services (CRS). Together the three agencies trained and equipped burial workers to conduct Safe and Dignified burials for Ebola victims across Sierra Leone. 

sierra leoneWe continue to work with our partners in Sierra Leone and last year our Gap Year volunteers visited there.  Life goes on.

As hard as it was and continues to be, we were able to plan and organise for Mum and Anna’s funerals, gathering family and friends to mourn and celebrate their lives with us; something perhaps we take for granted.