For a week during Lent I had the great privilege of accompanying Father Edwin Gariguez through a solidarity visit of the Atlantic Provinces. Father Edu is executive director of NASSA, the social action arm of the Philippines Catholic church and one of Development and Peace’s most enduring partners.
Gilio Brunelli, Director of International Programs
In light of all of the articles and discussions on the impact of the reduction in Development and Peace’s funding, we asked Gilio Brunelli, the Director of International Programs Department, to share his thoughts on CIDA's response to Development and Peace's proposal and to comment on how he sees the future of our work in the Global South. Here is what he had to say:
Development and Peace's website already provides ample details on CIDA’s response to our 2011-2016 funding proposal and some of the facts on the impacts, so there is little need to repeat these here. However, I do want to share with you some thoughts that have been weighing heavily on my mind.
Development and Peace partner NGO Forum in Cambodia is working to defend the land rights of Indigenous communities in the country. They recently released a report entitled "Free, Prior and Informed Consent in Development" that shows how communities are not being consulted when land deals are being made between the government and private companies.
By Suzanne Slobodian, Fundraising Officer, Major Gifts
I recently had the privilege, along with some of my other colleagues, to pass an hour in the company of the Venerable Sovath, a Cambodian monk who is making himself heard by the authorities in his country. In fact, because he has dared to even ask the most simple of questions – Why can’t I be here?What laws have I broken? Or even just Why? - he has been banned from staying in the pagodas of Cambodia, which are places of worship. Furthermore, there are now concerns over his personal safety.
Mary Durran, International Programs Officer for Latin America
For most people, the mention of the Kyoto Protocol does not evoke an association with the tropical lowlands of Honduras, nor with human rights abuses.
Yet Development and Peace’s Honduran partner, the Popol Nah Tun Foundation, come face to face every day with an unpleasant and less well known facet of the Kyoto Protocol – the Clean Development Mechanism, an important component of the global carbon trading market.
Guy Des Aulniers, Program Officer for Emergency Relief
Wastage of public resources should never be allowed to continue, says the Jesuit Center for Theological Reflection (JCTR) to the new elected government in Zambia in a press statement issued last week. “In a poor country like Zambia where poverty levels are as high as 63% and the incidence of rural poverty as high as 78%,” says Sydney Mwansa, Programme Officer in the Economic Equity and Development Programme of the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR), “every ngwee counts and should therefore be collected and spent for the intended purpose and beneficiaries.”
Trevor Cook, International development programs officer for Nigeria
The BBC reported on Monday, Jan. 23 that both Muslim and Christian residents of Kano, the northern Nigerian city where at least 160 people were killed in a series of attacks on Friday, have been urged to heed a day of prayer.
The current unrest in Nigeria, that seemed to have started because of the Government’s decision to cut subsidies to the fuel industry - has caught international attention. Some of Development and Peace’s partners offer further insight on this situation, as it is being felt directly from the ground, and how civil society and ordinary citizens have come together to demand change and justice.
The Centre Jeunes Kamenge (Kamenge Youth Centre) in Burundi has been a partner of Development and Peace since 2000. It received the Right Livelihood Award (the alternative Nobel prize) in 2002 and the Premio Takunda, a prize awarded by the Italian international solidarity organization CESVI, in 2010. In this country, where conflict and insecurity endure, some 2,000 youth between the ages of 15 and 25, come to the Centre to learn Spanish, computer skills and more. And in essence, learn to live together.