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Featuring the Religious Sisters of Charity

4 January 2012

The Religious Sisters of Charity (RSC) is an international Congregation founded in Ireland in 1815 by Mary Aikenhead. She was a middleclass Irishwoman aware of the needs of the poor in Ireland at that time and wishing to dedicate her life to relieving their poverty and helping them improve their standard of living. It is in this spirit that we take a fourth vow of Service to the Poor and our congregational motto is ‘Caritas Christi Urget Nos’.

Farewell and Welcome

4 January 2012

Interns Beth and Sisters Shiroma and Maria-Antonieta finished their programs and left the week before Christmas, leaving behind many new friends! They were much loved by the sisters they lived with, and by the UNANIMA office community. New UNANIMA Coordinator S. Michele Morek came just in time to say “goodbye!”

Latina Working Group

4 January 2012

NGO sisters from or working in Latin America have formed a working group to share wisdom with each other, and to make use of UN opportunities to facilitate dialog with their contacts in different countries. They are launching this group around preparations for Rio+20 in Brazil. The founding members of the group include Sisters Maria Antonieta Trimpay SP (UNANIMA), Griselda Martinez Morales CSJ, Yolanda Sánchez RGS, Mary Ives and Maura McCarthy IPS.

Preparation for Rio+20

4 January 2012

After gathering input from member nations, NGOs, UN agencies, and groups such as labor, industry, indigenous people, and other major entities, the UN group making plans for the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development distributed an “outcome document.” On December 15-16 the United Nations community (member states and NGOs) gathered to express their reactions to the document. There was a reaffirmation of the principles expressed at the first Rio meeting, a strong call to push for implementation, and to promote integration of the three “pillars”—the economic, environmental, and social aspects. The head of the planning group summarized it well: “be strong in will and strong in action,” and he encouraged NGOs / civil society to continue their excellent participation.

Durban, December 2011

4 January 2012

Expectations were very low going into this round of talks that sought an agreement from member nations on the issue of climate change. The good news is that they kept the dialog going, and made a tiny bit of forward progress. They created an independent structure (outside of the World Bank, and composed of 50% developing nations) to disburse “climate funds” to poor countries affected by climate change; they agreed that carbon dioxide emissions must be monitored better; and they decided to set up an international center for developing and sharing energy technology among countries. The bad news is that the target date for meeting the emissions goal was moved back to 2020. Expect a loud “dis-information” campaign by the fossil fuel industry.