Breezy CAFOD Update Meeting in Basingstoke

Meeting at St Bedes

Meeting at St Bedes

Many thanks to all the parish volunteers who braved the wind and rain to come to our CAFOD update meeting on Saturday 15th February at St Bede’s Basingstoke . Lizzie Funnell CAFOD’s Programme officer for The Middle East gave a very interesting talk on projects that support human rights and encourage communities to work together to resolve issues . Many thanks to Fr Chris and St Bede’s for hosting the meeting, and to Mary, Imelda and Tony for all their help.

Lizzie Funnell

Lizzie Funnell

We also heard about how and why CAFOD works with local experts. Watch this film by CAFOD’s Director of Operations Geoff O’Donoghue about his own experience of working with local experts  . Then we explored the Lent fast day resources which tell the story of  Sr Consilia a pharmacist who works in Gokwe Zimbabwe.

Don’t forget we have one more CAFOD update meeting at St Thomas of Canterbury Church Cowes on Saturday 22nd February from 11am to 1pm .

Great to see so many parish volunteers at meetings in Brockenhurst and Waterlooville.

Meeting at St Annes

Meeting at St Annes

What a fantastic meeting we had at St Anne’s Church Brockenhurst on Saturday 8th February. Sarah Burrows CAFOD’s emergency programmer officer came to speak about  our work in Syria and Lebanon.She told us that more than 11.5 million people have been forced from their homes (6.2m internally displaced people, 5.3m registered refugees in neighbouring countries) because of the conflict. CAFOD is supporting the refugees by providing relief items (emergency aid such as food, clean water, medicine, blankets, mattresses, hygiene kits) and also supporting local experts to provide education and counselling for the children.

Many  thanks to Michael and Andrea Janssens for organising the meeting and providing delicious home made biscuits and flapjacks, and to St Anne’s for hosting.

Volunteers and supporters

Volunteers and supporters

Our third CAFOD update meeting was held at Sacred Heart of Jesus & St Peter the Apostle Church in Waterloovile  on Monday 10th February. Despite the wet and windy weather we had a good turn out and we explored the Lent fast day materials and heard about CAFOD’s work with local experts . Sr Concilia is a pharmacist in Gokwe Zimbabwe and she  works tirelessly to save the lives of people who live a long way from a hospital . People come to her with malaria, typhoid, cholera and other illnesses and she helps to treat them by giving them medication, advice and checking on their health .

Many thanks to Tony Quinn for organising the meeting and to Sacred Heart for hosting.

There are 2 more meetings coming up Saturday 15th Feb at St Bede’s Basingstoke from 10:15am to 12:15pm and Saturday 22nd Feb at St Thomas of Canterbury Church Cowes from 11am to 1pm . Do come and join us!

Inspiring talk by Gisele, CAFOD’s Sustainability & Technical Leader at St Luke’s Theale

Parish Volunteers

Parish Volunteers

What a fantastic Lent fast day  meeting we had on Saturday with an inspirational talk by Gisele Henriques CAFOD’s Sustainability and Technical lead on how we support and develop social enterprises .Many thanks to Monica Morris our Parish Volunteer Coordinator for West Berkshire Area and parish volunteer at St Luke’s for organising the meeting and for baking the most delicious cakes . Also thanks to St Luke’s for hosting the meeting and to Fr Peter for his support.

Gisele Henriques

Gisele Henriques

Gisele shared with us the reasons for supporting  social enterprises:-

  • Optimising the potential of the local economy – local producers meet local demand
  • Support people’s capacity to do for themselves – Dignity and right to the right livelihood
  • Move beyond aid/ dependence to support human flourishing
  • Support enterprises to become fully independent
  • We like to support enterprises that do no harm to the natural environment and if possible aim to protect it.

Gisele shared an example of a successful social enterprise which was bee keeping in Nicaragua. This is an ecological and social enterprise as the bees pollinate the crops and also produce honey which the women can sell.

Talk by Gisele

Talk by Gisele

After Gisele’s talk we looked at the Lent fast day materials and explored the reasons why CAFOD works with local experts. Sr Consilia from Zimbabwe is featured on the Lent fast day poster and she is pharmacist in Gowke region who supports mothers and their babies. Here is her story…

We have 4 other Lent fast day meetings around the diocese:

Saturday 8th February St Anne’s Church Brockenhurst SO42 7SR  from 10:30am to 12:30pm at this meeting Sarah Burrows Emergency Programme Officer will be talking about her recent visit to CAFOD projects in Lebanon and Jordan.

Monday 10th February Sacred Heart & St Peter the Apostle Waterlooville PO7 7SR from 7:15pm to 9pm at this meeting Sally Kitchener CAFOD’s Content Manager will speak about our work in Zimbabwe.

 Saturday 15th February St Bede’s Church Basingstoke RG24 9DX from 10:15am to 12:15 pm at this meeting Lizzie Funnell Programme Officer  for the Middle East will speak about our work there. 

 Saturday 22nd February St Thomas of Canterbury Cowes PO31 7TJ   11am to 1pm followed by a soup lunch. At this meeting Maria Gonzalez CAFOD’s head of International Development will be talking about her recent visit to Zimbabwe to visit CAFOD’s projects.

So please book your place by emailing portsmouth@cafod.org.uk  or call 01252 329385