“We must keep the poor at the centre of our work as Caritas,” said outgoing Caritas president Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga at a press conference in Rome that opened the Catholic humanitarian network’s 20th General Assembly.
In 2015, Caritas welcomes South Sudan as its newest member. The small African country gained independence in 2011, and its people are experiencing the joys and struggles that come with creating a nation.
The Caritas Internationalis General Assembly (12-17 May) is on the theme of ‘One Human Family, Caring for Creation’. Over 300 delegates will set plans for the next 4 years aimed at improving the lives of those living in poverty and misery.
Caritas thinks ahead, helping local communities alongside displaced ones to prevent conflict beginning between the two. Caritas provides skills training, education and housing – helping people get back home together, back to working and learning.
Rebecca Mulvah is happy to be back home in her village of Balakatala. Rebecca, 34, fled to camp out in the bush, when rumors that her village would be burned by people from a neighbouring one filled her with terror. Her village had Ebola.
In early March, Liberia was counting down to being declared Ebola-free. There had been no new cases for a week - the first time this had happened since May 2014 – and the last survivor was discharged from hospital in Monrovia.