Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
March 23, 2009
Share Lent targets $10M goal
Funds go towards helping South Americans and Asians build a just society
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER
EDMONTON — The Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (CCODP) plans to collect $10 million this year through its annual Share Lent Campaign.
The campaign, whose theme is I Believe, I Give began on Ash Wednesday and runs until April 5.
CCODP, the official organization for international solidarity of the Catholic Church in Canada, fundraises annually during Lent.
Monies from the campaign are used to run awareness and education campaigns for the Canadian public and to support development projects in developing nations.
“This campaign is an opportunity to tell people in America and Asia that we support their efforts in order to build a more just society,” says Marie-Claude Poirier, temporary Alberta regional animator for CCODP.
The Alberta region of CCODP — made up of the dioceses of Edmonton, Calgary, St. Paul, Grouard-McLennan and Mackenzie-Fort Smith — plans to raise more than $800,000 out of the total national goal of $10 million.
Last year the organization raised $750,000 in the five dioceses.
Poirier has been promoting the campaign across Alberta and is confident the region will achieve its goal. She has organized workshops in centres such as Wetaskiwin, Edmonton, Morinville and Bonnyville.
She recently visited St. John Bosco and Austin O’Brien schools in Edmonton.
Supporting the poor of the Third World in these hard economic times is imperative because they stand to be the most affected.
According to Poirier, the number of people who live on less than $2 a day will increase by 100 million this year because of the economic recession.
“Development and Peace supports human development projects, which for the most part are sustainable projects,” the CCODP animator explained.
“It identifies partners or grassroots organizations in the developing world and then funds their programs and projects for change.
The objective is to allow people to empower themselves and transform their lives and their societies.”
In Peru, for example, CCODP has a partner by the name of Mantoc, an organization created by young street children to support each other.
With financial support from CCODP, Mantoc offers these children opportunities to better themselves, including training in the trades, education, health services and access to clean water.
“We support projects like these all over the world,” noted Poirier.
“In Burundi we support the Human Rights’ League, which helps people in the region to deal with maybe territorial issues or family issues or issues of violence.”
Since 1967, CCODP has supported more than 15,200 development projects and emergency relief programs, representing a total contribution of $530 million.
Last year alone, CCODP supported 277 development projects in the South.