World Youth Day and the World Social Forum
23 July 2012
“Life is a song – what better director than Christ to guide the song of our lives?” Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga used an image young people are familiar with to reach out to them for World youth Day 2011. Half a million young Catholics registered for the event, which was held in the Spanish capital, Madrid, from 16–21 August, culminating in a Mass led by Pope Benedict XVI. young pilgrims came from as far afield as the Horn of Africa and Japan. Representatives from Caritas Australia said they would use the spiritual journey to also promote their campaign, “A Just Climate.”
Caritas at the World Social Forum.
As migration was a major focus of the World Social Forum held in Dakar, Senegal, Caritas hosted a workshop on climate change and forced migration. Caritas Cambodia described its training programme for young people to help them stay in their villages, while Caritas Bangladesh explained how new drip irrigation methods can guarantee food security in the face of extreme weather, so preventing migration.
Secours Catholique (Caritas France) used a board game featuring migrants’ real stories to highlight the difficulties they can face. A link-up by computer camera allowed players to discuss the benefits of the free movement of people with observers in Paris, some of whom were migrants themselves.