At a parish meeting held on the First Sunday of Advent, 2nd December 2018, the charity Mary’s Meals was chosen as the Parish Project for 2019.
Mary’s Meals is a global movement of people from all walks of life, united by the belief that no child in this world of plenty should endure a day without a meal. Mary’s Meals is not a movement that divides rich from poor, or giver from receiver.
Nearly every part of the work depends on unpaid volunteers and it is through them that the movement grows. Together, Mary’s Meals is helping transform the lives of hundreds of thousands of impoverished children.
Mary’s Meals sets up community-run school feeding projects in some of the world’s poorest communities, where poverty and hunger prevent children from gaining an education. The idea is a simple one that works. Mary’s Meals provides one daily meal in a place of learning to attract chronically poor children into the classroom, where they receive an education that can, in the future, be their ladder out of poverty.
The Mary’s Meals campaign was born in 2002 when Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow visited Malawi during a famine and met a young mother, Emma, who was dying from AIDS. When Magnus asked her eldest son Edward what his dreams were in life, he replied simply: “I want to have enough food to eat and to go to school one day.”
Mary’s Meals began by feeding just 200 children in Malawi in 2002. Today, it is providing more than one million children with a daily school meal on four continents, across Benin, Ecuador, Haiti, India, Kenya, Lebanon, Liberia, Malawi, Myanmar, South Sudan, Syria, Thailand, Uganda and Zambia. Further details about this charity can be found here. This link opens in a new tab.
As part of our parish ‘Covenant with the poor’ two charitable projects were chosen for 2018.
At an open parish meeting held on the First Sunday of Advent, after hearing many suggestions, it was agreed that as a parish we should support one project at home and one overseas.
“Emmaus” is a charity to support the homeless. Emmaus is constantly working to open new communities across the UK, providing a home and meaningful work for people who have experienced homelessness and social exclusion. The first Emmaus community was founded in Paris, in 1949, by Father Henri-Antoine Grouès, better known as Abbé Pierre. He was an MP, Catholic priest and former member of the French Resistance who fought to provide homes for those who lived on the streets of Paris. Full details about this charity can be found here. This link opens in a new tab.
“Living Water Myanmar” is a charity which is a community development project that focuses on Water Security in one of the most impoverished regions of the country. This project is motivated by the severe lack of drinking water for villagers and school communities in the Dry Zone of Myanmar. The charity runs a water collection tank project which was started in 2011 in Nyaung Oo township to help schools and communities in the Dry Zone have access to clean water. Further details about this charity can be found here. This link opens in a new tab.
A water tank, paid for from the Parish Project fundraising has now been built, full details and photographs are here.