“I think it is a beautiful project in its conception, because it is for people with reduced mobility and this presence with them is very important. And I think it is also a way to testify our gratitude to those who came before us, who gave us what we have today”, the Cape Verdean Caritas official told ACI Africa.
She acknowledged with appreciation the partnership the Catholic entity she coordinates has with the government of Cape Verde, adding that the collaboration has also involved other sectors, including education, health, and agriculture sectors.
Credit: Caritas Caboverdiana
“We are in a process of adaptation and, as we usually say, acting in complementarity with the government. We don't do what the government is doing, but we act in complementarity, especially with regards to food security”, Ms. Almeida said.
She highlighted initiatives toward families, fostering independence through “empowerment”. She said, “We also encourage autonomy, because being dependent on other people's work sometimes also generates insecurity. So, all our work over the years has been in this aspect of empowerment.”
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The Coordinator of Caritas Cape Verde explained the empowerment initiatives, saying, “We are building our own resilience. We have a severe drought. We are managing and creating conditions for survival. We work with agricultural projects in the field of agroecology, as an example of the solidarity economy.”
“These are small things that we are going to do precisely to create this resilience, because drought is a reality for Cape Verde,” she said, and added, “We have always had drought and we will continue to have drought. So, we must have a different dynamic.”
“Caritas has walked alongside the poor, years before the independence under Caritas Portugal. To date, Caritas remains Cape Verde’s main charity organization, and we have offices in every island”, Ms. Almeida told ACI Africa March 31.
Sheila Pires is a veteran radio and television Mozambican journalist based in South Africa. She studied communications at the University of South Africa. She is passionate about writing on the works of the Church through Catholic journalism.