A monthly news bulletin exploring development, global justice and the work of CWS. An alternative to mainstream media sources. Past issues can be read here
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Breakfast, lunch and dinner on the Operation Refugee challenge.
Photo: Sonia Groes-Petrie.
For Your Diary
5 June World Environment Day—Connecting People to Nature
5 June WCC Prayer for Just Peace in the Holy Land
16—20 June Join Operation Refugee
20 June World Refugee Day
25 June Refugee Sunday— “And She Departed” available early June.
2 July Refugee Sunday in Anglican lectionary—”Whoever Welcomes You, Welcomes Me” available early June.
Join us in Operation Refugee
There are 18 days left to join Operation Refugee 2017, our award winning fundraising challenge (see over). Eat refugee rations from 16-20 June and keep our lifeline to Syrian refugees going. Coordinator David Lawson has shipped the first Food Boxes—containing chickpeas, lentils, bread and a little fish—we ask participants to add their own rice. He has less than 100 left. Register online and create a fundraising page. Our Kete has hints on doing the challenge plus recipes with a Middle Eastern flavour. Raising more money makes you eligible for bonus ingredients like an onion or egg.
Please help our partner the Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees provide emergency food, education and medical care for some of the nearly two million Syrians sheltering in Jordan and Lebanon. It’s a way of showing we are #With Refugees, sending a clear message of hope to people who have a right to safety and a decent life. Operation Refugee Lite is a 2 day version for students.
Sign up as an individual or a team. You can sponsor a participant or make a donation. Help us reach our $80,000 goal. Want to know more? Talk it over with David Lawson.
Global Day of Prayer to End Famine
Thanks to parishes who joined the Global Day of Prayer to End Famine, initiated by the All Africa Conference of Churches and the World Council of Churches to highlight the plight of more than 20 million people facing famine in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen. ACT Alliance signed a joint letter to G7 leaders calling for urgent action on the worsening food situation. You can help. Please support the South Sudan Appeal.
Sri Lanka: Women’s Centre
Under the leadership of the Women’s Centre, factory workers in Sri Lanka’s Free Trade Zones have been able to win improved conditions and wages. In their latest report, the Centre says establishing workers’ groups and training in labour rights (pictured above) were key to 7 factories increasing salaries by an average of 11%, and the installation of chairs, anti-fatigue carpet and schedules allowing seated tasks for those who spend long hours standing – wins for workers.
In February the Free Trade Zone union was affirmed as negotiator for workers after a two year dispute with two glove manufacturers, despite their union busting activity. Joint Secretary Anton Marcus who spoke of this case when he visited New Zealand in 2015, noted the importance of international support for their campaign.
The Centre has worked to improve living conditions in boarding houses and provide healthcare as well as campaigning for better wages and to stop violence. Importantly, it is building greater understanding between Tamil and Sinhala workers. In May, the EU restored Sri Lanka’s preferential access to its markets which had been halted in 2010 because of human rights violations. The EU expects continued progress on governance and human rights. The Women’s Centre says repression of unions has been increasing and Free Trade Zone employers were not paying the promised NZ$18.60 wage increase.
Iraq: Situation Update
ACT Alliance says their support to people displaced in the military operation against ISIL is constrained by the lack of funding for relief efforts. Protection is the priority for Iraqis displaced by the conflict. The newcomers need water, sanitation, health and food assistance. ACT is helping with shelter, education and livelihoods subject to adequate funding. 200,000 civilians remain behind ISIL lines in Mosul. The UN says nearly 760,000 people have managed to leave.
Honest Accounts 2017 reports more wealth—US$41.3 billion—left sub-Saharan Africa than it received in remittances, grants and aid during 2015. Profits are being paid to corporations and money is moved illegally out of the continent. Debt levels are rising fast in many countries.
One in 14 of New Zealand’s banana are fair trade. New Zealand Bananas: The Big Squeeze examines the global market and points to the positive effects of fair trade bananas in our market. CWS and Fair Trade Churches campaigned for fair trade bananas in shops.
Global: Displaced People
An estimated 31.1 million people—one every second—were displaced in 2016 according to the new Global Report on Internal Displacement. Disasters in 118 countries or territories displaced 24.2 million people. 922,000 by conflict in worst affected Democratic Republic of Congo.
Relationships Coordinator David Lawson was delighted to accept the Everydayhero Award for Excellence in Fundraising Events and the Soar Premier Award for Excellence at the annual conference of the Fundraising Institute of New Zealand for Operation Refugee 2016.
CWS partners in Tamil Nadu are campaigning against the Sumangali scheme, a form of bonded labour or slavery aimed at teenage girls. Read Give Girls a Fair Go to find how the Women Development Resource Centre helped Pooni.
Refugee Sunday Resources
Worship resources offering prayers and support to Syrian refugees will be available early June. Refugee Sunday is 25 June in the Methodist/Presbyterian lectionary and 2 July for Anglicans.
Congratulations to Emma Gondwe and Chris Riffel on the safe arrival of Jack Emmanuel Riffel.
Update provides news, information and stories. Reproduction of items is encouraged with attribution to CWS. Current and back issues are available.