First of all a huge thank you for a generous and compassionate response to Cyclone Idai. The response from churches in Cumbria was overwhelming, with 54 churches donating a combined £13,000. You have enabled our partners to respond with 1000’s of families receiving food, clean water, hygiene packs and cash transfers.
Monitoring by field staff in Malawi has found that cash transfers have been used to buy food, materials for shelter reconstruction, and fertilizer. The local economy has also been boosted as the majority of the displaced people buy their commodities from the local traders. This extends the benefit of your donations to other people affected by the floods whose families are local traders.
My next thank you is for making Christian Aid Week in Cumbria an amazing celebration of our potential to change the world, through your generosity, solidarity and action. It’s been great to see the week celebrated in so many different ways; funny drama sketches, house collections, plant sales, Big Brekkies. Central to the week is prayer and reflection as we listen to the voices of others like Jebbeh and nurse Judith. If you haven’t yet watched the Christian Aid Week film then it’s worth every of its 6 minutes.
So this leads me to the first invitation… by way of thank you for all your hard work this Christian Aid Week you are invited to the launch event for Power To Change, a new photo exhibition exclusive to Cumbria. The exhibition of photographs, taken by Dare Holland from Coniston, outline the transforming work of Christian Aid in Malawi. The launch will be a service and an afternoon tea - you are welcome to either or both! Date: 19 June 2019 Place: St Andrew’s Church, Penrith Celtic Communion ‘Peace & Justice’ Service at 12.30pm Afternoon tea and talk at 3pm If you could RSVP for the afternoon tea it would be helpful for catering purposes. Please extend the invitation to others in your church that help with Christian Aid or have an interest in learning more.
My last invitation is for you to join The Time Is Now. Recent youth strikes and mass protests have created a real sense of momentum for tackling the climate emergency. We have reached a critical time that could change the course of the future – for the whole world and above all for the world’s poorest communities. And we have a golden opportunity to lay some concrete demands at the doors of the UK Government. Our powerful, prophetic voice has brought about change before and can do so again now.
The Time Is Now mass lobby, co-ordinated by the Climate Coalition (of which Christian Aid is a key member) is a key moment to do so. Please join me for a day of celebration, prayer and action in Westminster on 26th June.
There will be workshops, a walk of witness and of course the opportunity to lobby your MP. Contact me to find our more or go online to register at https://www.christianaid.org.uk/campaigns/climate-change/thetimeisnow.
Many thanks for all that you do.
With every blessing,
Christian Aid Regional Coordinator, Cumbria
and Church Engagement Project Officer (currently working on Christian Aid Week)