Trócaire has appealed to the people of Dublin to support its 2022 Lenten appeal, which is in aid of the millions in Zimbabwe suffering from the devastating impact of Covid-19 and climate change.
A total of 700,000 Trócaire boxes, which have been a firm feature of Lent in Ireland for almost 50 years, will be rolled out to homes, schools and churches across Dublin and Ireland this week.
This year’s appeal underscores how thousands of families in Zimbabwe are facing into the combined challenges of Covid-19, climate change and a devastated economy. The Trócaire Box features a family of three; a widowed mother Thandekile (31) and her two children, Nomatter (11) and Forward (8), who live in the Matobo district in Southern Zimbabwe.
In November 2020, Thandekile’s husband Donovan (35) died from Covid-19 in South Africa, where he was working. Thandekile fears that she will die from Covid-19 or hunger and that there will be no one to look after her children. Even before the pandemic, the family faced hunger due to droughts and heavy rainfall, which caused their plants and crops to fail.
Trócaire CEO, Caoimhe de Barra, highlighted the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change, published last week, which indicated the extreme challenges faced by those living in Zimbabwe and in other developing countries.
“In Zimbabwe, the evidence of climate change is extremely overwhelming with droughts and cyclones affecting families’ ability to grow food and access clean water. According to the World Food Programme, 63 per cent of the Zimbabwe population of over 15 million live under the poverty line.
“Before the Covid-19 outbreak, 7.7 million Zimbabweans faced food shortages after a drought and cyclone in 2019, and ongoing drought in the last year has exacerbated the
situation. This has been worsened by rampant inflation,” the CEO stated.
Pictured Dublin Gaelic football star, Noelle Healy, who holds five All-Ireland senior Ladies Football Championship medals, with Lia Lopez Blanco (6) and Arwen McMahon (10) at the launch of Trócaire’s annual Lenten appeal. PHOTO: Mark Stedman