CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 23 September 2017

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African crisis demands a response

DUBLIN (SE): The Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference has asked for a special collection to be taken up at all Masses in the country on the weekend of July 22 and 23 to fund life-saving aid for people currently affected by the devastating hunger crisis in east-Africa.
 
The money raised will be distributed by the Catholic aid society, Trócaire, which is already involved in delivering emergency food, water and health care to the 25 million people affected.
 
Severe drought, driven by climate change, is currently affecting Kenya, South Sudan, Somalia and Ethiopia and has resulted in failed harvests and the widespread death of livestock.
 
Conflict has exacerbated the effects in South Sudan and Somalia, with areas in both countries now on the verge of famine.
 
The United Nations (UN) is describing the situation in the drought-ravaged parts of Africa as the greatest humanitarian crisis since the Second World War.
 
Bishop William Crean, the chairperson of Trócaire, said, “Globally, this crisis has received very little attention. Appeals for aid are under-funded. For example, the UN has received just 37 per cent of the funding it needs to respond to the crisis in Somalia. 
 
“The world is distracted by the actions of a handful of powerful politicians, while in east Africa millions suffer in silence. It is unacceptable for so many to go hungry.”

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