Posts in CWS

2014: The Fight Against Climate Change and Hunger Continue

The year in the humanitarian world? It ends with agencies scrambling to respond to another typhoon in the Philippines (luckily not as severe as last year's but still plenty worrisome), as well as bravely continuing work in the ongoing Syrian refugee crisis.

What 2014 has principally been, though, is a year of constant and churning problems, in which the challenges of climate change and food security (the availability and access to food) became more acute and ever-more clear.

12/11/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

FRB's Haiti-Northwest program faces many local challenges

Please pray for the people of Haiti as they struggle with the effects of multiple droughts and resultant severe food shortages.  This article from the BBC covers another aspect of desperation from lack of prospects: risking their lives on crowded boats as they seek work elsewhere. It mentions the area of Haiti where FRB's Haiti-Northwest program is working to help farmer cooperatives achieve food security in the face of natural disaster.

Every year thousands of Haitians risk their lives trying to make the perilous sea voyage from their country to one of its wealthier Caribbean neighbours in a bid for a better life.

They cram themselves into small boats which are often far from seaworthy. They run the risk of capsizing or being picked up by coastguard patrols.

Many feel this is their only option in a country which is not only the poorest in the western hemisphere but which was further destroyed by a devastating earthquake in 2010.

People from all over Haiti head to the north-west of the island to get onto these boats to leave their homeland, but most are from this impoverished region itself.

06/03/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Local cooperatives fill many important roles in Haitian Communities

Because there is little government presence where FRB’s Haiti-Northwest program is working, local people understand the need to organize for the protection, development and growth of their communities. The twelve program communities have created cooperatives which address the varied needs and concerns of its members.

Training Co-ops provide training on many topics, among them appropriate agricultural techniques like intercropping as a way to take the best advantage of available land and ensure that, if one crop fails, the others might survive. More farmers are planting peanuts, congo beans (pigeon peas), and root crops like manioc (cassava) and sweet potato because of their excellent survival rates.

04/16/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In the Dominican Republic, greater food security for marginalized poor

The goal of FRB’s Dominican Republic-Bateyes program is to reduce malnutrition and increase family incomes and the overall quality of life of Haitian immigrants and Dominicans of Haitian descent. These marginalized communities live in bateyes [ba TAY yace] — former sugar plantation work camps — and, recently ruled as “in transit” (though families may have lived in the country for four generations), are not generally eligible for government services.

Their situation is improving through the program: participants are learning new skills in crop management, soil preparation, community seed banks, nutrition, vegetable and small animal production, and efficient marketing of excess produce. Pass-on-the-gift projects with small animals afford participants a source of protein and income. Organizing committees help communities access basics such as water and education for their children.

03/24/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Prayer Request from Honduras-Nueva Frontera Program

Dear Friends, 
Below is a prayer request for our partner staff with Honduras-Nueva Frontera program.  Many have met Delmis during travels with FRB. She recently notified us that violence has suddenly erupted in Nueva Frontera. 

Due to food scarcity and lack of employment people are becoming desperate and crime had been steadily rising.  Organized criminal groups are now vying for control of the area and robberies are becoming quite common.

03/10/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

La Roya Epidemic Decimating Livelihoods Dependent on Coffee in Honduras

Please keep the people of Central America and FRB's Honduras Nueva Frontera Program in your thoughts and prayers as they struggle with how the Coffee Rust epidemic is affecting their livelihoods.

Central America is undergoing the worst Coffee Rust plague since 1976. The state of phytosanitary emergency (measures for the control of plant diseases) has been declared in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Honduras.

The Coffee Rust Plague, also known as La Roya, is caused by a fungus that affects the leaves and destroys crops and plants. Once it attacks, the only option for most farmers is to destroy an entire coffee plantation

11/19/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Guatemala - Totonicapan-Nebaj Program Prayer Request

Dear Friends of FRB, 

We wanted to share some sad news with all of you.  We recently received an update from our partner in the Guatemala Totonicapan-Nebaj program, CIEDEG, that Margarita Hermoso, the woman who a group of FRB visitors built a greenhouse with, passed away last week.

CIEDEG staff said that she had been ill for some time and recently passed away. They are not sure what her illness was as she had tried to get medical attention,

07/24/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Advocacy in Serbia

In April 2013, CWS hosted a delegation of CWS staff and volunteers from the US who came to visit CWS programs in Serbia and Georgia. In the Serbia-Smederevo program, they witnessed the joint program of CWS, Red Cross Smederevo and Foods Resource Bank providing food assistance and ensuring food security, they toured several pre-schools that provide secure place to young socially vulnerable children, visited the safe house for victims of domestic violence and talked to Smederevo local government officials and CWS local partners.

06/07/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Building up local resources to serve those in need in Serbia

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FRB’s Serbia-Smederevo program is producing more and more of the food it supplies to the elderly, internally displaced, unemployed, marginalized Roma populations, and children served by the program’s local partner, Serbian Red Cross. While increasing its long-term sustainability by producing meat, vegetables, fruit and grain on-site, the program employs able-bodied recipients in construction, animal husbandry, farming, and food production operations whenever possible.

05/24/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Church World Service Receives Award in Serbia

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On February 13, 2013, CWS was awarded a gold medal from the national Red Cross of Serbia for “significant results in achieving the goals and objectives of the Red Cross.” The ceremony was held in the Red Cross headquarters in Belgrade and attended by General Secretary of Red Cross Serbia, Mrs. Vesna Milenovic, Secretary of Red Cross Smederevo, Mr. Tomislav Zivanovic, CWS Europe Regional Coordinator, Dr Vitali Vorona and Red Cross and CWS staff. Dr Vorona accepted the award on behalf of CWS.

02/27/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More