Caritas to honor “Women, Sowers of Development” at award ceremony on 8 March

On 8 March 2015, International Women’s Day, Caritas Internationalis and the Fidel Götz Foundation will award two 10,000 euro prizes to honor women who have been “sowers of development,” working to end hunger in their communities.

In tribal villages in the area of Wayanad in the Indian state of Kerala, Caritas programmes linked impoverished families with government programmes, introduced organic farming methods, and helped them earn a living. Photo by Caritas

In tribal villages in the area of Wayanad in the Indian state of Kerala, Caritas programmes linked impoverished families with government programmes, introduced organic farming methods, and helped them earn a living. Photo by Caritas

“The prize recognises projects which highlight the contribution of women to secure food and improve the livelihoods of their families and communities. Through this project, women are empowered to take a more active role in their communities,” says Michel Roy, Secretary General of Caritas Internationalis. “By listening to the stories of these women, we make their efforts visible, we learn more about the importance of women’s empowerment and how important it is for the Church to value it.”

In many parts of the world, women have less access than men to resources like credit, education and land. If women had equal access to resources, globally 100 to 150 million people could be lifted out of hunger.

The Women Sowers of Development Prize consists of two prizes of €10,000 each. One category is aimed at programmes carried out by Caritas organisations. The other is aimed at organisations outside the Caritas network.

The award ceremony will be part of the second “Voices of Faith” storytelling event, which will bring together extraordinary Catholic women from all over the world.  Held at the Casina Pio IV in the Vatican and sponsored by the Fidel Götz Foundation, the “Voices of Faith” event will highlight the contribution of women to the work of the Catholic Church in accompanying the poor, upholding human dignity and promoting equality.  Speakers will include human rights advocates, policy makers, academics, visionaries and many who have faced adversity and seemingly insurmountable challenges in carrying out their work. The event will be streamed on www.voicesoffaith.org starting at 15:00 Central European Time (14:00 UTC) on 8 March.

About Voices of Faith

Voices of Faith is a core initiative of the Liechtenstein-based Fidel Götz Foundation, whose work aims to enrich the lives of women and girls globally. The Foundation supports different initiatives within the Vatican and works with global Catholic organisations to develop and implement programmes that produce results. For more information about the FGF go to: www.fidelgoetzstiftung.com

About Caritas Internationalis

Caritas Internationalis is the official humanitarian and development organisation of the Catholic Church, dedicated to serving the poor and promoting charity and justice. Caritas works to attend to the poorest, responding to disasters, providing social services, promoting integral human development, speaking out against the causes of poverty and violence and galvanising all people of good will. Inspired by the Gospels and Catholic teaching, the 164 national members of Caritas Internationalis seek to promote peace between peoples, sustainable development, the right to food, safe migration, decent work and good health, especially for people living with HIV and AIDS. www.caritas.org

Media contacts

For Voices of Faith storytelling event:
Mr. Sigvard Wohlwend
+423 792 50 32
sigvard.wohlwend@wow.li

For Women Sowers of Development prize:
Ms. Laura Sheahen
+39 335 823 4233
sheahen@caritas.va

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