By Lisa Krebs
For five years, Gaba Goundoukou has been a member of Aura, a partner organisation of Caritas Switzerland in Chad. Gaba is an educated farmer and works in 20 villages in the region Guéra, located in the east of the country. Gaba is responsible for the implementation of various activities of Aura for rural development, in collaboration with the villagers.
This year Gaba is fully engaged with the emergency assistance project of Caritas Switzerland and UNAD (Caritas Chad) that helps people from several regions of Chad who are severely affected by the drought. Help is mainly provided in form of food and new seeds.
From the beginning of the project, Gaba took on an important role: he was responsible for determining which families could benefit from the emergency assistance project. In order to make a fair selection, Gaba visited every household in “his” villages and completed a questionnaire with the […]
West Africa’s Sahel region faced devastating hunger in 2012 after drought left a huge swathe of countries short of food.
Chad was one of the worst affected countries, with poor rainfall last year hurting farmers and animal herders the most. Then locusts and severe flooding added to the misery.
In Chad, Caritas is focusing on the food needs of vulnerable populations through food distribution as well as activities to build agricultural sustainability through the provision of seeds, veterinary inputs and technical support in agricultural production.
With the support of Caritas members around the world, Caritas Switzerland has been working with Caritas Chad and a local partner ACORD to support farmers during the agricultural year, improving yields to avoid a vicious cycle of famine.
Caritas will help over 100,000 people with seeds and activities aimed at improving the resilience of farmers’ livelihoods throughout the year.
Read these stories from by Lisa Krebs on the difference […]
By Ryan Worms, Caritas Internationalis
“I want to set-up a small business to sell rice, flour and sugar. The last time, I made a tidy profit. I need 1000 gourdes (US$25),” says Ariette Tessono.
Ariette is one of the members of the solidarity fund set up by Caritas in Labiche, in the south of Haiti. The women who are part of the fund are taught techniques so they can grow kitchen gardens.
“Thanks to the training I’ve received from Natasha, who’s an agronomist, I now have a lovely garden full of chilli peppers,” says Jaunasse, another member of the project. “What I make from selling my produce at the market is enough to feed my family well, buy uniforms and school books and pay for my children’s education.”
“Today is a day of hope,” says Haman Abdou. “Thanks to Caritas’s help, I know that I’ll have something to sow in my field once […]
UN Special Rapporteur on the “Right to Food”, Mr. Olivier de Schutte was interviewed by Caritas Europa. A video interview with Mr. Olivier de Schutter will be screened at a High Level Panel at the European Development Days, organised by Caritas Europa, Caritas Belgium, CIDSE and Cyprus NGO Development Platform (CYNDEP), on 17 October 2012 from 14:00 to 15:30. Panellists will debate how to effectively integrate the Right to Food into the new post-2015 policy framework in light of the expiration of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2015, and the Rio+20 mandate for Sustainable Development Goals. The debate will include EU and UN experiences and advices, as well as good practices from the field by FIAN and Caritas Rwanda. The event’s aim is to generate recommendations and concrete solutions to improve the respect, the protection and the fulfilment of the Right to Food.
Interview with Shiferaw Mamo, Social Development Programme Coordinator of the Ethiopian Catholic Secretariat (Caritas Ethiopia).
The drought and food crisis in summer 2011 affected millions in the Horn of Africa. How did Caritas Ethiopia help them?
The situation in 2011 was very critical. Thanks to the Caritas member organisations who supported us, our programmes have saved lives. Supplementary food has been distributed for some malnourished children in some pocket areas through Catholic health institutions and this contributed to save lives of this children.
Also, people didn’t lose their assets. Many people are herders here. In places like the Rift Valley where their oxen died from the drought, we replaced them: we provided sheep, goats and oxen. We gave out almost 9000 chickens and more than 13,000 goats. If we hadn’t done that, they might have sold all their animals to buy food.
People received money through our “cash for work” programmes, building rural […]
“Don’t cry Adrjiera,” said Momeye to her baby girl. “Don’t suckle so hard. My breast milk is finished as I too must eat.” The 20-year-old mother arrived a day ago in this feeding centre in Saga, a suburb of Niger’s capital Niamey.
Her daughter suffers from severe acute malnutrition, a life threatening condition requiring urgent treatment. Without therapeutic feeding, between a third and a half of cases for under-fives end in death. If the children get the help they need, their chances of survival go up dramatically.
Children and mothers receive the necessary care at the centre, run by the Sisters of Charity with the support of CADEV, the national Caritas organisation in Niger. They regain their strength and are integrated in a regular programme to monitor their health.
At the moment, eight mothers with children in acute danger are hospitalised in the centre. Thirty more less severe cases wait in the […]
“Today is a day of hope,” said Haman Abdou. “With the help of Caritas, I know I’ll have enough to sow my field as soon as the rain begins to fall.”
Haman Abdou is a local farmer living in the Ouallam region, 160 km north of Niamey, Niger’s capital. He is one of the many people who will receive free seeds at a Caritas supported ‘seed fair’ in Koira Bano, a village in the area. It is part of the emergency response launched by Caritas for West African countries in the Sahel region.
“The last harvest was very poor,” he said. “With erratic rainfall and locusts, I have produced almost nothing. I have struggled for months to find enough food for my family. It has been impossible to save seed for the next farming season under these conditions. The seed fair is a blessing for us.”
Local Caritas Emergency Officer Prospère Yougare […]
The film is also available in French and Spanish
By Rev. Msgr. Robert J. Vitillo, Head of Caritas Internationalis Delegation to the UN in Geneva On 02 July 2012, Floriana Polito and I had the pleasure of convening some influential figures in the fight against hunger and poverty. Caritas Internationalis, together with Oxfam, held an important side event focused on human rights in the context of the food crisis in the Sahel region of Africa; it was held at the Palais des Nations in conjunction with the 20th Session of the UN Human Rights.