Cardinal Rodriguez signs the Caritas Japan postcard calling on their government to live up to promises on aid as hosts of this year's G8. Download postcard Credits: Caritas/Carofei

Cardinal Rodriguez signs the Caritas Japan postcard calling on their government to live up to promises on aid as hosts of this year’s G8. Download postcard Credits: Caritas/Carofei

Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga is keeping up the pressure on G8 countries with a call to live up to their promises on aid.

After meeting with world leaders in the run up to previous G8’s, Cardinal Rodriguez is urging this year’s summit in Hokkaido, Japan 7-9 July to not let anti-poverty targets be missed due to lack of money.

Cardinal Rodriguez said, “Aid can make a real difference to people. I have seen how it can transform societies, for example in my own country Honduras. It would be a scandal if poor people are not given the chance to change their own lives through lack of the right support from rich countries.”

The G8 includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the UK, and the United States. Leaders of G8 countries will meet to discuss development among other issues.

World leaders set 2015 as the target date for the achievement of the eight Millennium Development Goals as an unambiguous challenge to political commitment.

“There is now a real danger that the Millennium Development Goals will be remembered as empty words. This can only fuel the cynicism with which so many people in developing countries already regard rich countries’ expressions of concern,” said the Cardinal.

Caritas members around the world are urging their supporters to tack action through an email campaign and by sending a postcard to the government of Japan. Caritas Japan has given 80,000 protest postcards to its supporters to mail to the Japanese government.

Cardinal Rodriguez said that Caritas Japan had led the way and urged all supporters of Caritas to sign up to the postcard campaign or the Tanabata action on caritas.org.

Caritas will be at the G8 itself through Caritas Japan and by sending Joseph Donnelly, the Head of the Caritas International Delegation at the UN in New York to carry on the campaigning.

Download postcards in English and Japanese

Read joint statement by Caritas and CIDSE to the G8 in English, French, and Spanish.

Read letter from National Conferences of Catholic Bishops to the Leaders of the G8 Nations