Mobilising Christians Against Poverty

Archive for August, 2007

Copperbelt launch conference – Monday 27 August

On Monday 27 August Micah Challenge Zambia will be holding a Copperbelt launch. This will be held at the New Beginnings Christian Centre in Kitwe town centre on from 08:30-15:00.

Guest speakers include:

  • Rev Joel Edwards, Chair of the global Council for Micah Challenge and General Director of Evangelical Alliance UK
  • Andy Clasper, Executive Director of Micah Challenge UK
  • Jennifer Sakala, Civil Society for Trade Network in Zambia

To register your place please contact us:

Email: zambia@micahchallenge.org

Tel: 02 681 482 / 02 681 172

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Micah Challenge Zambia Welcomes SADC Leaders!

Use the following link to download a PDF of this press release: SADC & MCZ Press Release PDF

As Micah Challenge welcomes our political leaders to the SADC annual summit, we pose this question to them: “Why has 27 years of development cooperation failed to address the needs of much of the population living in poverty?” Among the many competing priorities on the agenda, we call on our leaders to consider consulting and working directly with people living in poverty. We are concerned that development initiatives addressing the needs of the poor are achieving limited transformation among the poor communities. The example of fighting malaria through mosquito nets, which some rural people are rejecting, demonstrates the failure of most development initiatives to consult and work with the rural poor.

Since we are half-way when the world leaders made a commitment to halve poverty by 2015, we call on SADC leaders to review how they are cooperating in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The MDGs have presented, for low-income nations in sub-Saharan Africa, an opportunity to address the needs of those living in poverty as international agencies that fund development initiatives and leaders of the North claim to support the MDG targets and to be “pro-poor.”

However, Micah Challenge Zambia is troubled by the lack of evidence showing people living in poverty being consulted in the development initiatives concerning them. We call on this Summit to focus its energy on how to meet the MDGs in the rural areas and the urban shanty compounds. Millions of our people who live in these communities lack safe drinking water, and have limited access to proper sanitation, health care and education. These unmet needs must be tackled if the MDGs targets are to be achieved.

We specifically call upon our leaders to leave the Summit with resolve that in their countries they will facilitate rules and procedures that guarantee:

· To meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

· Development initiatives be created through consulting with those living in poverty.

· Poor households have the ability to send their children to school and can afford to keep them in school.

· All people have access to health care and PLWHA have access to ART.

· Poor households will be given rights to the land they are on, or legal access to appropriate land if necessary, on which they can build legally.

· Poor households to be connected to water, sanitation and drainage networks.

· That the poor can set up small-scale enterprises and get loans to help them start a business.

· Citizens will be empowered and encouraged to own mining and manufacturing companies.

These needs will not be met without our governments addressing governance and constitutional issues. We call on the Summit not to just focus attention in these meetings on requests for increase in aid or on debt relief, but rather also on addressing governance and constitutional issues in order to ensure that citizens’ rights are protected and citizen entitlements are met. Fair trade demands good governance. Regional cooperation depends upon national integrity. We call on the church to pray for the SADC summit and to pray especially for the healing and peace of Zimbabwe

Micah Challenge Steering Committee.

ENDS

Notes for the Editor:

Micah Challenge in Zambia is building a coalition of member organisations, churches, denominations, institutions and individuals who are committed to engaging in poverty reduction and responding to the biblical call to ‘do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God’ (Micah 6:8).

Micah Challenge Zambia is co-ordinated by Jubilee Centre under the auspices of the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia, and is part of the global Micah Challenge campaign founded by the World Evangelical Alliance (which represents more 420 million Christians) and the Micah Network (which brings together more than three 300 Christian organizations that provide relief, development and justice activities throughout the world) to help mobilise Christians against poverty.

Interviews

For further information contact Lawrence Temfwe, the National Coordinator of MCZ on 096 6909286