Bishops across Scotland are urging supporters to get their Wee Box Lent appeal donations to SCIAF before May 8 to make sure they don’t miss out on the chance to double their money.
Every year thousands of generous schoolchildren, parishioners and people all over the country fill their boxes during Lent, or organise events, to raise money to help the world’s poorest people.
SCIAF’s Bishop President Bishop Joseph Toal, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh Leo Cushley, Bishop of Paisley John Keenan, Bishop of Argyll and the Isles Brian McGee, and Bishop of Galloway William Nolan urged supporters to heed their call as time is running out to turn every £1 donation into £2 through the UK government’s Aid Match scheme.
Bishop Toal said: “SCIAF supporters are amazingly generous.
‘‘During the Wee Box Lent appeal thousands give their time and money to help the world’s poorest survive and thrive.
“However, time is running out to have the UK government double your Wee Box donations so please return it to us before the deadline.”
Bishop Keenan said, as Catholics, “helping the poor isn’t an option – it’s part of our faith”.
“It is a wonderful thing that the Church, through SCIAF, is a catalyst to mobilise the whole of Scotland to help the poorest of our brothers and sisters in the world. I urge you all to get your Wee Box to SCIAF before the deadline to make sure the money you give will be doubled, pound-for-pound, by the UK government.”
This year’s Wee Box appeal tells the story of how Scottish money is helping poor families affected by poverty and illegal fishing in one of the poorest provinces in Cambodia, Stung Treng.
Cambodian family Lang, Toma and their five children, depend on fishing and farming to survive but were badly affected by gangs coming into their stretch of river and using dynamite and electrocution to harvest huge numbers of fish.
Working closely with its local Cambodian partner, Development and Partnership in Action (DPA), SCIAF helped them form a Community Fishing Association which worked to establish the villagers’ collective ownership of their stretch of river and their unique right to fish on it.
They also work closely with the police and local authorities to set up regular patrols of the river to prevent illegal fishing in future and enable fish stocks could return to levels which can support local families and future generations.
The Langs also received training in how to grow more rice so they can support themselves all year round.
To find out more go HERE SCIAF or call 0141 354 5555.