“Give us the opportunity to change our story”
This is the slogan of the 13 Houses project with street children in Ghana. Their “story” and all their plans to change it has drastically changed with the Covid 19 epidemic. In reaction to this, the 13 Houses Campaign has adapted since April. The aim is to not abandon people living in the streets, more vulnerable than ever.
Vincentian Family members who are running the 13 Houses projects in forgotten areas of the world, have decided to expand their services to the growing needs of homeless groups, and the Famvin Homeless Alliance is supporting them with your donations.
One month ago, we had identified 5 initiatives in Lebanon, Philippines, Peru, Rwanda, and Ukraine. Since then, this has tripled! Numbers will probably continue to grow as the pandemic gets more severe and develops in other countries.
You can be of great help to change the stories we are hearing about: hunger, unemployment, overcrowding in small shacks or refugee camps, and police abuse towards street dwellers…
Our Vincentian initiatives provide food, shelter, hygiene products, medicine, and protective material.
With 80 $ you can feed a family for a month in Guatemala.
With 70 $ you can shelter and feed one person in quarantine for a month in Tanzania.
With 50 $ you can feed a street child for a month in Ghana.
With 20 $ you can feed a family for a week in Ecuador, or a refugee for a month in Rwanda.
Below are some more stories you can do something about. Let us not forget any one of them.
Our minimum goal is 10.000 USD.
Donate and share our appeal!
So far, the Vincentian Lay Missionaries (MISEVI in Spanish) in Angola have helped over 1180 slum dwellers living in very poor communities. Their work has focused on providing food to counter malnutrition in children and improving sanitation to help prevent the spread of the virus.
In Bolivia, the Vincentian Lay Missionaries (MISEVI in Spanish) have been working with families who have lost all of their income generating opportunities and female-headed households. To date, 200 very poor families, comprising around 800 people, have been provided with food.
The Vincentian Marian Youth (VMY) has launched an especial mission during the pandemic. Every Saturday, groups deliver food to families in need in different parts of the country. They have already helped 45 families and they hope to collaborate with more families in the coming weeks.
All nine branches of the Vincentian Family in Ecuador have teamed up in a national campaign called “to take care of one another”. The aim is to distribute food and hygiene products to 2000 families who have lost their means of livelihood in very poor areas of the country.
The Daughters of Charity in Ethiopia are continuing to serve those who are homeless and living in extreme poverty by ensuring their right to humanitarian assistance is met. They are providing food, clothing, blankets, and hygiene products, as well as supplying frontline workers with protective equipment.
The Daughters of Charity Program for Street Children in Kumasi usually advocates on behalf of children who are victims of human trafficking. Many of these street children and young women in Ghana have been adversely affected by the lockdown since their only source of income is doing menial jobs such as helping food vendors and moving heavy loads. As the need for these jobs has all but disappeared, so has their means to survive.
In Guatemala, the poorest struggle to survive and feed their children as they have lost their already meagre sources of income. The Daughters of Charity are regularly visiting one hundred of the poorest families in their community to support them during this difficult time.
Akamasoa the Vincentian project initiated by Fr. Pedro Opeka, is distributing aid to all those families who are forced to lockdown in the peripheries of Antanananarivo.
In Peru, in response to Covid-19, the Congregation of the Mission commenced a soup kitchen and they are now offering 340 meals every day. Many people have come together and joined hands to make this project a reality.
In Romania, the SSVP is visiting poor and vulnerable families in their community; and despite Covid-19, they will soon commence to build a new home for one of these families as part of the 13 Houses Campaign. This will ensure they have a safe and warm place to stay in time for winter.
In Tanzania, the Congregation of the Mission have been asked by the government to host a ‘Quarantine Camp’ and to help care for 100 quarantined people. They are supplying food, hygiene products, and protective equipment for healthcare workers.
We have also supported these projects in previous appeals
Vincent Helps, an alliance of several Vincentian organizations in the Philippines, is working actively to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in slums and help homeless feed their families.
In Peru, the demand for meals at the soup kitchen in Chiclayo, run by the Vincentian organization Color Esperanza, has increased 50% due to movement restrictions, and is on the rise.
Our FHA Ambassador, Fr. Henri Matsinga, CM, provides food kits to refugee families in the Mahama Camp in Rwanda where he serves as a chaplain; due to quarantine restrictions many Burundi refugees can no longer provide for themselves through petty commerce.
Lebanon was already facing political and economic hardship even before the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite all restrictions, the Bureau Social of the CM in Beirut, continues to attend the poorest Lebanese families living in slums, but also some Syrian refugees in need of food kits and essential medicine.
In Ukraine, Depaul is working hard to mitigate the impact of the quarantine on the street homeless population and to support those at greatest risk on the streets with bronchial conditions.
Vincentians in action
Letter from Fr. Tomaž Mavrič, CM, on the Occasion of the Feast of St. Vincent de Paul 2020
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Affective and effective solidarity during the COVID-19 pandemic
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