Namibia is the 34th largest country in the world and receives the least rainfall in sub-Saharan Africa. Last summer, the country faced its worst drought in 30 years. Almost half of the population, or 1 million people, has suffered from or still suffers from hunger today.
Each year, Pax Christi International, a global Catholic peace movement and network that works to help establish peace, respect for human rights, justice and reconciliation in areas of the world that are torn by conflict, gives out the Pax Christi International Peace Award to honour an individual or organization taking a stand for peace in the world today.
Since becoming its own nation in 2011, South Sudan has struggled to establish a society of peace and democracy. Lingering tensions that exist between various armed political and ethnic groups, which pre-date the creation of the country, were re-ignited in December 2013, when clashes erupted in the capital Juba. Since then, violence has spread to other parts of the country.
March 15th marks three years since Syria entered into a civil war that has had devastating impacts on the Syrian population and enormous repercussions on the entire region of the Middle East. This crisis shows few signs of abating, and the humanitarian needs continue to rise with each passing day that this crisis endures.
Gilio Brunelli, Directeur of International Programs
On the eve of the fourth anniversary of the earthquake that struck Haiti, there are neither particular preparations nor special expectations in the streets of Port-au-Prince. There are no plans on the part of civil society, and there are only rumours that the government will organize something to commemorate this sad event. But three days before the fateful moment, we still do not know what the nature or scope of this “thing” will be. Nobody has the heart for it anyway.
Gilio Brunelli, Director of International Programs
No need to be in Haiti itself to realize that the world of reconstruction of this country is both disparate and complex, and to see the variety of initiatives that have burst on the scene there. In Miami airport, where I wait for my flight to Port-au-Prince, I notice a group of men and women dressed as "volunteers." It says in red and bold characters on their shirts “Volunteer work for Haitian children." In their case, it's clear; they are going to Haiti for the children. I then observe a couple in their fifties with a guitar.
In the summer of 2010, Pakistan experienced one of the worst monsoon seasons in its history. Heavy rains left one-fifth of the country submerged in water and approximately 20 million people were affected by this natural disaster.
As violence continues to escalate in the Central African Republic, the Catholic Church in the country is calling for an immediate ceasefire.
"We're deeply concerned about the crisis in Central African Republic (CAR). The situation in Bangui is chaotic. Many people have been killed. The fighting must stop immediately," said Archbishop Dieudonné Nzapalainga of the capital Bangui.
Laith Eskander is drinking his coffee. I am too. We need it! It must be only 10 C in the schoolyard of the Rome Catholic School in Amman, Jordan, where we are standing. Yet, the cold hasn’t stopped over 200 young adults from trickling into the yard to wait for their night classes to start. Most are Syrian, but there are also Iraqis, Sudanese, Somalis, Sri Lankans, Indonesians and others, I’m sure. They have come to learn either English or computer programming. The teachers have similar origins, but there are also British and American volunteers.