I would like to take this opportunity to say a sincere and heartfelt thank you to your readers for the support they have given to Christian Aid Ireland over the past year. Their donations have enabled Christian Aid to reach some of the poorest and most marginalised communities in the world.
In March, public generosity enabled us to reach people caught up in emergencies such as Cyclone Idai which devastated Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi. During Christian Aid Week in May, our supporters organised events - breakfasts, coffee mornings and lunches - and carried out door-to-door fundraising and church collections, raising more than €565,000.
The focus this year was Sierra Leone, the world’s most dangerous country in which to give birth. But Christian Aid supporters are bringing hope with a new health centre in which to deliver their babies, and a qualified nurse to care for them and their infants.
And in India this Christmas, we appealed for support to challenge the degrading practice of ‘manual scavenging’ - cleaning human excrement from latrines and sewers by hand. Support from your readers is helping these women escape the worst job in the world by training them instead as tailors. Today, they are leading lives of dignity and can send their children to school.
So, on behalf of Christian Aid Ireland, I would like to thank everyone who has supported our work - individuals, communities and churches - for their prayers and their generosity.
Rosamond Bennett, Chief Executive, Christian Aid Ireland.