This week, we see the return of our ever-popular online prayer and chat session.
During this time of socially distancing, we can sometimes feel isolated from our friends and church community. So, on Thursday 9 July at 11am-12pm, we are inviting CAFOD volunteers and supporters from across England and Wales to join us for a special prayer and reflection, which will be followed by a virtual coffee morning.
We are asking that everyone has a candle ready to light when they join the prayer, so we can share a moment of silent reflection together to start.
And, we hope this session will be an opportunity to take some time out of our busy lives and pause to think about how the current situation has affected not only our everyday lives, but the lives of our brothers and sisters around the world.
In addition to our scheduled lunchtime talks, on Tuesday 7 July, 7pm-8pm, we are holding a special online talk about what it is like to live with coronavirus in Syria and the surrounding countries.
Here in the UK, we are so used to hearing the message ‘stay home, stay safe’, but what if your home isn’t safe?’
This is reality for thousands of Syrians who were forced to flee their homes because of war and violence and are now displaced within their own country or are living as refugees in neighbouring countries.
In Syria, there is real worry for people living in camps where overcrowding makes social distancing almost impossible and where the remaining healthcare facilities are extremely fragile. The extensive community networks of the Church in Syria mean that it is well placed to provide aid in some of the worst-hit and most inaccessible areas of the country.
In neighbouring Lebanon, home to nearly one million refugees, our work with local experts continues to provide food kits, basic medical care and emergency cash grants – which allow people to prioritise their own needs.
We have adapted our projects that teach leadership and other skills to women affected by the conflict so that this work can continue safely during the coronavirus crisis.
Dario said: “Today, the Yanomami people are very sad and worried. But we’re going to keep fighting this important battle against coronavirus in our territories.”
Please join us on 11am-12pm, Thursday 2 July, where Cecilia Ilorio, CAFOD’s Country representative for Brazil, will be sharing updates on the situation in the Amazon.
She will speak about how we are working alongside communities to help them prepare for and respond to the threat of the coronavirus pandemic, while also working alongside these communities to help them to safeguard their indigenous lands.
Together, we are working to improve indigenous peoples living conditions, health access and education so they cannot only survive the coronavirus crisis but begin to rebuild and heal.