Thứ Sáu, 21 tháng 7, 2017

Pope Francis donates €25 thousand to ease East Africa famine

Pope Francis donates €25 thousand to ease East Africa famine
In this Wednesday, April 5, 2017 file photo, some of thousands of people walk for hours to reach a food distribution site in Malualkuel, in the Northern Bahr el Ghazal region of South Soudan.- AP

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has donated €25 thousand to the efforts of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation, FAO, in support of people facing famine and food insecurity in East Africa.
The Holy Father had pledged personal assistance in a message to FAO's Conference on 3 July 2017, in which he said he was "inspired also by the desire to encourage Governments".
In February of this year, famine was declared in parts of South Sudan (where civil strife has largely interrupted daily life). While the situation has eased after a significant scaling up in the humanitarian response, some 6 million people in the country are still struggling to find enough food every day.
Meanwhile, there are an estimated 16 million people in need of humanitarian assistance in five other East African countries: Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. That figure represents an increase of about 30 percent since late 2016.
Below, please find the official statement regarding the donation
*************************************
Pope Francis donates to FAO to assist drought and conflict-stricken populations in East Africa
Gesture aims to encourage governments to support FAO's emergency response
21 July 2017, Rome - In an unprecedented move, Pope Francis has symbolically donated €25,000 to FAO's efforts supporting people facing food insecurity and famine in East Africa.
Pope Francis said the funds are "a symbolic contribution to an FAO programme that provides seeds to rural families in areas affected by the combined effects of conflicts and drought."
The pontiff's remarks were contained in a letter written to FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva by Monsignor Fernando Chica Arellano, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the UN food agencies in Rome.
Pope Francis' gesture stemmed from a pledge he made in a message to FAO's Conference on 3 July 2017 and was "inspired also by the desire to encourage Governments," Monsignor Chica wrote in the letter.
Famine was declared in parts of South Sudan in February and while the situation has eased after a significant scaling up in the humanitarian response, some 6 million people in the country are still struggling to find enough food every day.
Meanwhile the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance in five other East African countries - Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda - is currently estimated at about 16 million, which marks an increase of about 30 percent since late 2016.
Pope Francis, who has made solidarity a major theme of his pontificate, is set to visit FAO's headquarters on 16 October to mark World Food Day. This year the event is being held under the slogan: "Change the future of migration. Invest in food security and rural development".