Catholic bishops and religious orders from the high arctic to the southern tip of Patagonia are demanding accountability for Canadian mining companies operating in Latin America up to and including the right of villagers and farmers to sue in Canadian courts in the event of environmental disasters and human rights abuses.

Published in Canada

Four years into Syria’s civil war, Canada’s Catholic development agency is petitioning Ottawa for more aid, Canadian diplomatic contributions to a peace plan and stronger efforts to choke off the money that keeps both the Assad regime and ISIS fighting.

Published in Canada

When the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace launched its Share Lent “Sow Much Love” campaign, it didn’t know just how much love it might get. Thanks to its first-ever mobile phone app, it is getting a better idea.

Published in Canada

I was thrilled to hear that my university’s office of campus ministry was hosting a “100-mile meal” potluck, preparing a meal made with ingredients found within 160 kilometres of my home. By eating locally we become proactive agents of change. We support our local farmers and our economy.

Published in YSN: Speaking Out

Thousands of refugees who fled Mosul, Iraq, six months ago, now living in tents near the border with Turkey, will get more stable and winter-ready housing thanks to an extra $2.4 million in government funding given to the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace.

Published in International

Fifty years ago Len Kraemer was young, strong, intelligent and rural, which is why he was helping bring in a crop of hay on the family farm near Walkerton, Ont. As he jammed his gloves on harder and lifted bales of hay under the afternoon sun, young Kraemer started thinking about Africa.

Published in Features

The planet produces enough food to feed everyone, yet more than 800 million people go hungry every day.

Published in Features

A relaunched corporate social responsibility policy for Canadian mining companies has Development and Peace hopeful that Canadian companies will be held accountable for their environmental, labour and community investment records in Latin America, Africa and Asia. 

Published in Canada

Charina Umagat has been an involved, engaged parishioner at St. Emile parish in Winnipeg for 20 years. The last thing she expected to find in her pew on a Sunday was a pamphlet casting moral doubt on her job and her employer.

Published in Canada

Every one of the $13 million Development and Peace raised last year to help Filipinos left homeless by the most powerful hurricane ever to make landfall has a job to do. Thousands of Filipino families are still living in tents, in the beached hulks of ships Typhoon Haiyan left stranded on the streets of Tacloban City and in elementary schools where Filipino families first found shelter from the storm 10 months ago.

Published in International

OTTAWA - The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada is giving $1 million to the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace to help displaced Iraqis.

Published in Canada

The Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace is funnelling aid to its Caritas partners to respond to frigid winter temperatures in the Mideast that  have hit an estimated two million Syrians displaced by the country's civil war and hundreds of thousands of refugees outside of Syria's borders.

Published in Canada

Internal e-mails, briefing notes and memoranda obtained by The Catholic Register reveal that a government decision to cut funding to Canada’s Catholic development agency went against the advice of almost everyone consulted, including its own bureaucracy.

Published in Canada

Facing high-profile resignations and protests from within the organization, massive budget cuts and a complete reorganization, the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace

Published in Canada
(UPDATED 25/10/12)

The French-speaking youth wing of the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace has withdrawn its support of the organization’s fall education campaign and next spring’s Share Lent drives in protest over a decision to first delay and then change this fall’s education campaign.

Development and Peace’s traditional fall campaign was to have included postcards addressed to Prime Minister Stephen Harper requesting a national consultation on the direction of foreign aid policy. CCCB president Archbishop Richard Smith and CCCB general secretary Msgr. Pat Powers informed Development and Peace’s leaders in September that several bishops were uncomfortable with the directly political tone of the campaign, leading Development and Peace to delay the launch for a month and withdraw the postcards.

“This decision by our leadership undermines the credibility of our movement and renders it impossible to recruit new members or to maintain engagement among our youth groups,” wrote nine francophone youth representatives who met in Montreal just before the fall education campaign launched Oct. 15.

In a “declaration” issued Oct. 16, the representatives claim the way in which the bishops maneuvered Development and Peace into compromising its plans caused them to question the prophetic role of the organization within the Church.

“We have cried and shared our suffering and anger,” they wrote.

The young members said they understood the gravity of withdrawing their support at this time but claimed something had to be done to force reform on the leadership. Instead of participating in the fall campaign the youth wing will launch an internal campaign to return Development and Peace to its democratic roots and original mission.

Attracting new members, especially among youth, is one focus of this fall’s campaign.

“We knew there would be some members who would be very frustrated with this. That’s not a surprise,” said Development and Peace national council president Ronald Breau.

The national council is looking forward to speaking with youth representatives about their concerns, Breau said. Ariane Collin, who represents francophone youth on the national council, will be able to present her concerns at a full national council meeting scheduled for Nov. 30 to Dec. 2. Internal dissension is a normal part of life in Development and Peace, said Breau.

“I don’t think we’re seeing the disintegration of the movement,” he said. Some of the most vocal criticism of CCCB interference in the organization’s affairs has come from Quebec and francophone New Brunswick, but Breau said he doesn’t believe the Catholic movement set up by Canada’s bishops in 1967 is splitting along linguistic lines.

“I don’t see a French-English split. I see that the French members have a real passion, they have a real strong foundation and they really, really believe — and they’re more expressive,” Breau said.

“That’s good for the movement.”

The bishops are not worried about a gulf between English and French opinion on the development agency, said CCCB spokesman Rene Laprise.

"Half of the members of the CCCB standing committee (on Development and Peace) are francophones, as are half the members of the CCODP liaison committee, and our experience with both committees has shown no divisions along linguistic lines," Laprise wrote in an email.

The CCCB has backed the "Do It Justice" fall campaign by announcing the launch and posting a link to the Development and Peace site on it's own web site.  A four-page background paper on international development policy got the thumbs up with only minor changes from the CCCB’s committee on Development and Peace and from Development and Peace’s liaison committee for relations with the bishops. 
The campaign materials also include a video introduction viewable on YouTube. Other campaign materials are available at www.devp.org .

Published in Canada