Montreal, March 6, 2019 — Today, on Ash Wednesday, Development and Peace—Caritas Canada is launching its 2019 Share Lent fundraising campaign by delving into how we can all Share the Journey with forced migrants. The Share the Journey campaign focuses on the need to understand the root causes that force millions of people worldwide to flee their homes and promote a “culture of encounter.”
During the period of Lent, a time conducive to sharing, Development and Peace asks Canadians to show their solidarity by making a contribution towards its programs which are helping communities create the conditions to live with dignity and justice.
“We’re dealing with an alarming situation where, every minute, 31 people are forcibly displaced somewhere in the world. During this sacred time of introspection, transformation and sharing, each and every one of us must try to promote a culture of encounter, open ourselves up to others and imagine how they must feel when forced to flee and abandon their family or land,” says Serge Langlois, Executive Director of Development and Peace - Caritas Canada.
Spearheaded by Pope Francis and Caritas Internationalis, a confederation of 160 development and aid organizations that includes Development and Peace, the Share the Journey campaign aims to respond to the growing crisis of forced migration in the world today. While some people choose to migrate, displacement has been forced upon 68.5 million children, women and men worldwide who are threatened by conflict, climate change and the exploitation of natural resources. As Pope Francis reminded us at his General Audience on September 27, 2017: “Hope is the force that drives us ‘to share the journey,’ because the journey is made jointly: by those who come to our land, and by us who go towards their heart, to understand them, to understand their culture, their language.”
For over 50 years, Development and Peace has been working on a daily basis to achieve greater social justice for the most vulnerable people in the Global South. This year, through stories of families from Burma, Colombia Nigeria and Syria, the Share the Journey campaign emphasizes the need to address the root causes of forced migration. As such, it is calling on Prime Minister Trudeau’s government to commit to supporting grassroots organization working for peace, democracy and human rights, while investing more in diplomatic and peaceful solutions to armed conflicts.
As in past years, thousands of devoted Development and Peace members are organizing a number of education and fundraising activities throughout Canada, including solidarity walks. The 2019Share Lent campaign will culminate with a special collection in parishes across the country on Sunday, April 7, also known as Solidarity Sunday.
Donations made to the Share Lent campaign make it possible to implement programs that empower vulnerable communities in the Global South to further their own development.
Donations to Development and Peace may be made by calling 1-888-234-8533 or by visiting the organization’s website at devp.org.