On Saturday the 25th of October people came from far and wide to join us for the launch of our new campaign, One Climate One World at Buckfast Abbey. We were host to two special guest speakers Jesy Romero and Adan Samuel who work with CAFOD’s partners C.E.A.S. (Commission Episcopal de Accion Social). C.E.A.S. is the Peruvian Bishops’ Social Action Commission. The campaign was officially launched with an overview of Buckfast Abbey’s history by Abbot David Charlesworth which focused on the abbey’s sustainable energy. Our two guest speakers then had their turn to tell us about the impacts of climate change in Peru and what they have been doing to raise awareness and make a difference.
(Jesy Romero Left and Adan Samuel Right with Cafod Plymouth Manager Simon Giarchi)
Jesy is a community organiser and coordinates a programme for fair water distribution in Ancash for CEAS.
“At CEAS, I have seen from close up the marginalisation and exclusion of the poor communities we work with who are constantly defending their lands. My Christian vocation compels me to speak the truth and nothing but the truth for the common good. I face the stark reality of dealing with environmental degradation which continues unabated and climate change which I have seen affecting the most vulnerable communities. We are called to continue to provide a human and just response in solidarity with our communities.”
Adan is from Cruz de Mayo (Cross of May) in the Peruvian Andes. His community is at risk of losing their access to water because of glacial melt. He told us:
“My job is to coordinate the provision of water. CEAS has taught us how much water we can take from the lagoon, so as not to waste it. We are trying to let the lagoon reach its original level. There are 2,800 families in Cruz de Mayo. The water also sustains people living in Yungay, Caraz and Campiña. It´s a great responsibility. Water brings us problems, but also unites us.”
Talking on Climate Change Adan said “Industry should invest where climate change will have greatest impact. When the glaciers melt, we won´t be able to grow corn, carnations or potatoes. This place will become a desert. And where can we go? Everyone else will be in the same boat. If we can restore the lagoon with rainfall and change our irrigation systems, so that we use less water and produce more, that will make a difference.”
The campaign day ended with a question and answer session with CAFOD head office staff including Head of Campaigns Sophie Dodgeon, Eilidh Macpherson and our guests Jesy and Adan. There was also a chance at the end for people to make their pledges.
We would like to say Thank You to all those who made the day a huge success; Simon Giarchi, Lindsey Carter, Abbot David Charlesworth, Jesy Romero, Adan Samuel, Sophie Dodgeon, Eilidh Macpherson and all CAFOD Plymouth supporters.