Christian Aid Ireland is determined to end poverty and injustice worldwide with the help of our supporters and partners.
Marie Ilunga is a 35 years old woman from Kalehe, DRC. In January 2019, Marie was raped by three armed men while she was working in the fields. She was then abandoned by her husband who fled to another town, as he was ashamed of her. Marie experienced physical and mental health problems, which led her to attempt to end her life by suicide. After attending a sensitisation session on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) carried out by Christian Aid and partner Sarcaf in her village, however, Marie decided to seek help. She approached community outreach workers who provided her with psychological first aid and referred her to specialised service providers for urgent medical and psychosocial support. After receiving appropriate care, Marie was given the opportunity to participate in income generating activities, given financial support (approximately €75) to help her start a small business, and encouraged to join a village savings and loan association run by other SGBV survivors. Marie has become financially independent and empowered as a result. “I am now healthy, and I live with others without shame in my village. I am trading in fried fish and I can provide food and clothes for my children. Today, I am respected in my village.”
Shuvai Mutami lives in Zvishavane town in central Zimbabwe, where gold and diamond mining are the biggest source of income. Shuvai, like many other women, is excluded from formal mining, because of social and political discrimination. Shuvai set up a small scale, unregulated and high-risk mine to earn an income and support her family. Christian Aid’s partner, Centre for Conflict Management and Transformation (CCMT), is challenging this discrimination and exclusion through workshops on gender equality, economic opportunities and health and safety. Through CCMT’s support, Shuvai has reduced risks in her own mine by complying with environmental protection legislation and ensuring safe conditions for herself and her workers. Shuvai also became a member of Zvishavane Women in Mining Association and is a mentor to other women miners. Shuvai said “CCMT, through its dialogue processes, opened doors for women to stand up on their own and to fight for their economic rights”.
ISRAEL & OCCUPIED PALESTINE TERRITORIES (Humanitarian Response & Conflict)
In December 2019, the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) Public Prosecutor finished its preliminary examination of the situation in Palestine, concluding that there was reasonable basis to launch an investigation into the situation in Palestine. The case is now with the ICC’s Pre-Trial chamber and a ruling will be issued in the coming months to confirm the Prosecutor’s decision over the Court’s jurisdiction over the situation in Palestine. The opening of an investigation will be a significant move for justice and accountability for violations of international law, both by Israel and by Palestinian militant groups or the Palestinian Authority. Several of Christian Aid’s partners have been actively engaged with the ICC during this process, including B'tselem’s information and analysis was cited five times in the document justifying the decision and the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) has been engaging with the process towards ICC prosecution of war crimes committed.