Caritas Australia appeal tops $4 million
The Caritas Australia Asia Earthquake Appeal has topped $4 million, with much more expected to flow in from a weekend collection at Catholic parishes around the nation.
Caritas Australia, the Catholic relief agency, has already sent much-needed funds to its partners in areas worst hit by the Boxing Day tsunami to aid immediate relief efforts in the stricken communities.
National Director of Caritas Australia, Jack de Groot, thanks the generosity of donors and welcomes the current debate on the role of religious-based aid agencies.
He says Caritas had a long-standing record of humanitarian work in all parts of the globe.
"Caritas is an agency of the Catholic Church but does not seek in any way to evangelise or convert the people it assists," Mr de Groot said.
"Rather, we focus on our common humanity and seek always through our programs to affirm the dignity of each person with whom we have contact, regardless of religious affiliation."
Caritas is the world's second largest international aid network and is represented in 162 countries.
Prior to the Tsunami disaster, Caritas was already working with local organisations in the affected areas of India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Bangladesh.
Through its work on the ground in those countries, Caritas and its partner agencies have earned the trust of affected communities and have been able to immediately meet the needs of the most vulnerable.
"Caritas works without distinction to help those in need, taking into account at all times cultural and religious sensitivities," Mr de Groot said.
Caritas Australia appeal tops $4 million (Caritas Australia 10/1/05)
Caritas Australia Asian Eathquake/Tsunami Appeal
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Pope praises human solidarity after tsunami tragedy (CathNews 4/1/05)
Australian Church sends prayers and support to tsunami victims (CathNews 4/1/05)
Catholic churches dig deep this weekend for Caritas Australia appeal (Caritas Australia 9/1/05)
11 Jan 2005