News from CAFOD

Our Catholic family in the Archdiocese of Birmingham has always been very generous in our compassion for people living in poverty around the world.

We know that every life created by God is precious and we can show our compassion through CAFOD, the official overseas development agency of the church.

Many of us have given or received presents from a wide range of virtual World Gifts (a gift that represents and supports an area of CAFOD’s work), including popular gifts such as Water for the Family, The Goat that Gives and Chirpy Chickens. This Christmas these gifts are more important than ever.

One gift that is close to the heart of CAFOD director, Christine Allen, is the gift of listening. 

The Listening Centre (£50) supports training and education sessions for vulnerable women who have been victims of violence, and it is also a great place for women to learn new trade skills so they can earn an independent income. 

"I visited the Listening Centre in Bakavu, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, run by local organisation, Centre Olame. I met women, traumatised by the brutality of war - survivors of sexual violence and abuse," said Christine. 

“The listening rooms give women a safe and comfortable space for them to talk and share with other women about their experiences, which helps them to restore their confidence, dignity, and their daily lives. A World Gift is not just a gift - you are giving the gift of hope."

You will still find popular gifts like a Happy Queen Bee (£4) or a sheet of stickers for your Christmas cards, each of which represents a meal for a family. But this year there are six brand new gifts to support communities in developing countries who are struggling to deal with the effects of the spread of the Coronavirus. 

You can buy our loved ones a Keep Clean kit for £6 or protective equipment for a Healthcare Worker for £12.  The Messages of Hope loudspeaker for £67 keeps a community up to date with important information about the pandemic, in rural or remote villages, which in turn can save many lives. 

“The coronavirus pandemic has shown us that we are much more connected and reliant on each other than ever before. World Gifts is a wonderful opportunity to discover great gift ideas to help you shop compassionately this Christmas. From the Listening Centre, to PPE For Health Workers, every gift is an ongoing commitment to supporting vulnerable people overseas and an act of us standing together, in these challenging COVID-19 times,” added Christine.   

Visit CAFOD World Gifts to learn more and to change someone’s life.

Celebrate Advent with CAFOD

After a year of uncertainty, we all need the hope, peace and true comfort and joy that the Advent season can offer. CAFOD has a range of resources and virtual events to help us come together online to pray, reflect and celebrate as we prepare for the coming of our Lord. Visit our website to learn more

[This Advent you can help share comfort and joy with families around the world, like Saba’s. Saba and her three children fled their home in Myanmar to escape horrific violence and persecution. They were targeted because of their ethnicity. Thanks to your support last year, Saba was given essential materials to build a shelter – so finally her children have a safe place to call home.] We can stretch out our hands to people living in poverty and refugees by donating to CAFOD’s Advent Appeal