Appeal for flood survivors in India

By |27 August 2014|

Caritas has launched an eight-month emergency programme to help to over 47,000 in Odisha after floods left 3.5 million people in need.
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    Relief efforts start in India after Cyclone Phailin leaves trail of destruction

Relief efforts start in India after Cyclone Phailin leaves trail of destruction

By |15 October 2013|

Hundreds of thousands of people in India need help after Cyclone Phailin flattened their homes and destroyed their livelihoods. Many people remain marooned with their villages cut off due to high flood waters.

Caritas reaching flood hit North India

By |26 June 2013|

The early monsoons have brought misery in the life of the people in Uttrakhand, which has been severely affected by floods and landslides following the torrential rainfall in the region since mid-June. The current death toll is raised more than 1000 people with at least 4000 people still stranded.

Tropical storm threatening coastal areas in Bay of Bengal

By |13 May 2013|

The tropical cyclone ‘Mahasen’ is heading towards coastal part of the Bay of Bengal and at any time it may cross any parts of Bangladesh or India or Myanmar on 15 - 17, May 2013.

Capital punishment no answer to rape crimes in India

By |14 January 2013|

Caritas India says capital punishment is not a deterent against crimes of sexual violence, but improved protection for women and a national school curriculum that tackle these issues will help. Last month, a 23-year-old student died of her injuries after being raped in the capital Delhi. Five men have been charged with her murder and are facing trial. If convicted, they face the death penalty. In recommendations to the Justice J.S. Verma Committee, formed by the government to recommend safety measures for women, Caritas India urged for curriculums from school levels onwards to tackle the issue of violenece and abuse agaisnt women and girls. “The need of the hour is to revolutionize our thinking through education,” said Patrick Hansda, a young public relations officer at Caritas India. The Verma committee’s recommendations in less than a month from now will be considered in amending laws for speedier justice and punishment in sexual assault cases [...]

Floods in India and Bangladesh

By |5 July 2012|

Severe flooding has struck Bangladesh and northeast India, claiming over 150 lives and destroying farms and homes. Around two million people have been displaced as monsoon rains and the overflowing Brahmaputra river have swallowed up crops, livestock, grain reserves, and more. Around 2084 villages are cut off and marooned in water In both countries, Caritas teams have visited the victims and started relief operations. In Bangladesh, Caritas has started feeding flood-affected families and plans to increase its food distribution programmes. In India, Caritas is focusing on protecting flood victims’ health. Near marooned villages in the block of Soothea falling within the worst affected district of Sonitpur, Caritas India’s assessment team saw filthy water and animal carcasses floating. “With no drinking water, people had no other option but to drink floodwater,” says Babita Alick, Team Leader for Disaster Management. Alick is concerned about the condition of families in relief camps. “With people and [...]
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    Homily on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee Celebration of Caritas India

Homily on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee Celebration of Caritas India

By |21 January 2012|

By Mar Andrews Thazhath Archbishop of Trichur & President of KCBC ‘Do not despise any of these little ones. The son of man has come to save the lost’ Dear friends in Jesus Christ, We are gathered here to thank the Almighty for the abundant blessings upon Caritas India as it completes 50 years of fruitful service to the Church and the society. With St. Paul, as we heard in today’s reading, let us “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing and give thanks to God at every moment. This is the will of God, our vocation as Christians” (I Thes. 5: 16-18). Jubilee is looking back and looking forward. According to the spirit of Jubilee seen in the book of Leviticus (25:8-28) it is an occasion of remembrance of the past events; of repentance for the faults committed; of redemption of what is lost; of return to the [...]

Happy golden jubilee Caritas India

By |20 January 2012|

Caritas India is marking its golden jubilee by reconfirming its commitment towards the poor and oppressed. Celebrations are underway in New Delhi today and tommorrow. Caritas India staff have been joined by international guests from acrosss Caritas organisations. The theme is “Zero Poverty”. Caritas India says it wants to use the goldern jubilee to refocus its mission. Workshops on issues ranging from trafficking to food to urban poverty have already taken place and further regional events are already planned. Apart from them, thirteen regional workshops and celebrations at different diocesan levels have been planned which will run throughout the year. The outcome of these workshops will act as a base for future actions and interventions. As a reflection of Caritas India’s contribution for the last 50 years, it has initiated a research in collaboration with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences to understand the reach and extend of Caritas India. [...]

Aid reaching survivors of Cyclone Thane in India

By |13 January 2012|

Caritas India is helping people whose homes and livelihoods were destroyed by a severe cyclone that struck southern India in late December 2011. With a wind speed of 140km per hour, Cyclone Thane pummelled the Tamil Nadu coast and the area of Pondicherry on 30 December. Heavy rains and tidal waves as high as 7m flooded villages. Powerful winds swept away roofs or whole houses.“The storm created havoc,” says Ambrose Christy, zonal manager for Caritas India. “Over 45 people are reported to be dead and thousands of huts and small houses have collapsed.”More than 300,000 houses were damaged and people were evacuated from low-lying coastal areas to state-run relief camps. Roads were also damaged, with uprooted trees and electric posts strewn across streets. Electricity, water supplies, and communication lines were cut off. Livestock were killed, and crops like sugar and rice were destroyed.Caritas India is working with dioceses to [...]

Earthquake shakes India, Nepal and Bangladesh

By |19 September 2011|

A strong earthquake shook areas of India, Nepal and Bangladesh on Sunday night, 18 September. The epicentre of the 6.8-magnitude quake is in Sikkim, India, an area not far from the border with Nepal. Caritas India is in touch with religious sisters in the city of Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, and with a priest in Darjeeling, also in the region. They report that large cracks have developed in the buildings and a few old buildings have collapsed in Gangtok.  In Gangtok proper, they say that government institutions and businesses are open, while schools are closed. News reports say that rescue workers are pulling victims or survivors from quake-struck buildings in Gangtok. Roads in the areas of Gangtok and Darjeeling are closed due to landslides and heavy rains, say Caritas contacts in the region. Most Catholic churches, schools and convents in the region are safe, but the Holy Cross Montessori School was [...]

Soaring food costs hitting poor from Algeria to India

By |19 January 2011|

Millions of people around the world are struggling to cope with rising food prices say Caritas staff. “The price rises in India usually affect the poorest people, but they are now so steep that the middle class is hit hard as well,” said Sunil Simon, in charge of natural resource management at Caritas India. The FAO (the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation) food price index has surpassed the level it reached during the major food riots of 2008. After a year of steady increases, the index reached 214,7 points in December, compared to 206 points in November. What worries Caritas experts is that the index exceeded the level it had attained in 2008, a year of severe food crises and food riots in many developing countries. As one out of six people in the world already suffer from hunger, rising food prices make it even more difficult for poor people to buy [...]

Caritas statement on human trafficking

By |29 August 2010|

Sanumaya Tamang and Sani Tam-ang were both 16 when they were taken to brothels in India. More than 10,000 women and children form Nepal are trafficked into India every year. Internal conflict, poverty, illiteracy and unemployment in Nepal are the root causes of the problem. In India, Caritas is working with authorities to toughen government boarder controls to shut down the activity. Caritas works around the global to combat trafficking. Caritas strongly condemns trafficking as a criminal act that violates basic human rights. Caritas is committed to taking decisive actions To raise public awareness and enable people to take preventative actions Caritas works in communities with at risk groups to explain the dangers of trafficking.Caritas also works with various key groups such as doctors, religious, social workers and government officials to build a long-term network of awareness building. To advocate for alternatives for vulnerable people Caritas works to provide alternatives to vulnerable groups who are looking to [...]

Coping with drought in India

By |26 May 2010|

Bara is a village situated in the drought-prone area in Jharkhand State in eastern India. Difficult climate conditions and complete dependency on rain means that farmers only produce one crop per year. The agricultural yield was extremely low. Since the villagers had few opportunities for other types of employment in the area, they migrated to cities in search of work. But a few years ago the situation began to improve. In 2005, a local villager named Samaj Vikas Sanstha started a drought preparedness programme in Bara Village with support from Caritas India. A village development committee consisting of 9 men and 3 women was formed to take up the task of awareness raising within the community on the need to conserve precious natural resources, such as water. As a result, the community is more conscious about the changing climate and better prepared to face the adverse situations that may come. Indeed, [...]

Desertification in India

By |26 September 2009|

In recent times, the loss of vegetation in the area has vastly degraded their once fertile land, and water has become a rare commodity. Since 1999, the failure of the monsoon has adversely affected the soil and the land has become barren. In order to regenerate it, ravines and ridges were treated by constructing gully plugs and digging out contour trenches. Earth check dams with spillways on either side were built to allow the water overflow to run off without damaging the dams.  Ponds were also constructed to hold larger volumes of water. As farmers witnessed the effects of lack of water and soil erosion and its detrimental impact on agricultural production and yields, the concept of watershed management gained credence amongst them. Many are convinced that the local environment can be regenerated through a well-managed watershed programme. Many now understand the fact that as the groundwater increases, normal farming patterns [...]
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    Imagine a world for tomorrow’s generation: A view from Poznan and India

Imagine a world for tomorrow’s generation: A view from Poznan and India

By |26 September 2009|

A view from Poznan  Grow Climate Justice Campaign was launched on 7 December in Poznan. “People in countries such as Bangladesh are totally dependent on the weather,” Bishop Theotonius Gomes C.S.C, Bishop of Dhaka and President of Caritas Bangladesh said at the launch. “Our agriculture, and hence our whole culture, is based on water from the rains and rivers. Changed rainfall patterns, harsher storms and longer droughts are already costing lives and livelihoods,” he said. “We have seen a rapid increase in the need for relief efforts. Within the next 10 years there will be 200 million climate refugees, of which 25 percent, 50 million, could be from Bangladesh.” A mass was held in Fara Church in the Old Market Centre. Children from the local parish brought up offerings to the altar, which included a plant, some soil and water to symbolize the elements of the Earth. In the end, the conference in [...]

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