Ahead of International Day of Education on 24th January, World Vision Ireland has highlighted that if every girl worldwide received 12 years’ quality education, lifetime earnings for women would increase by US$15 to US$30 trillion globally.
Peace cannot and should not be taken for granted and is a precious value that requires cultivation and tending in every generation.
Loreto Rumbek, which was founded by Irish nuns to address the lack of educational opportunities for girls in South Sudan, opened in 2008 with just 35 students and now has over 291 students, 90% of whom go on to university.
Thousands of life-changing projects have been implemented with one common thread: Misean Cara members working in solidarity with a community to address a real and immediate need.
“With every contract signed, every meal provided and every diploma granted, Sr Orla Treacy advances the status of women and the cause of peace in South Sudan.”
President of the Sudanese Catholic Bishops’ Conference is cautiously optimistic over peace agreement but appeals for prayers and support for “salvation of South Sudan”.
“The food they have in these camps is not enough. Some of them get only one meal a day.” – Auxiliary Bishop Daniel Adwok Kur of Khartoum
A seven-year-old in Syria has never known peace; a seven-year-old in Gaza has survived two separate wars; a seven-year-old in South Sudan has experienced both famine and civil war in their short life.
Killarney students are to present a €1000 bursary to the principal of a girls’ secondary school in South Sudan this evening.
One of the world’s poorest countries before the conflict erupted in 2013, South Sudan is now facing violence, illness and extreme poverty, which are destroying the lives of millions.
In 2009 Fr Patrick Devine SMA founded the Shalom Centre for Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation. It has now trained over 9,600 community leaders and village elders as peacemakers.
"Our true success is reflected in the lives that are changed for the better in places that face extraordinary challenges, such as South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, and parts of Kenya and India. It is inspiring to see a life transformed due the active care and belief of a missionary.”
Over 24 million people currently rely on food aid in South Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya due to a combination of drought and conflict.
Aid has delivered so many success stories. Unfortunately, the spread of conflicts and the worsening impacts of climate change are increasingly out-pacing those efforts.
Humanitarian personnel in South Sudan operate against a backdrop of protracted conflict, chronic poverty, economic crisis, severe food shortages and weakened infrastructure.
"There is a risk of genocide in South Sudan. Write it in large letters, so that someone from the international community intervenes before it is too late," is appeal from local Church.
In the tradition of Mgr Hugh O'Flaherty they are “not walking away from conflict, but stepping towards it, to help the most vulnerable, at the time of their greatest need.”