It was early winter when Mira found out she was pregnant with her first child. She was excited but this soon turned to fear when her husband and in-laws made it clear that they were not. For the next two months the family pressured her to have a termination, threatening her and inflicting life-threatening domestic violence.
Mira feared for the life of her unborn child.
For the sake of her child, she decided to escape and called Shakti’s crisis line, a women’s refuge that receives funding through your donations. The Shakti crisis- services team relocated her to a safe-house and helped her receive vital prenatal care and began the process of securing her a work visa under the domestic violence category.
Just before Christmas, Mira gave birth to a healthy baby boy. The Shakti team refers to him as one of their ‘Shakti Babies’, as they all feel a joint sense of pride and responsibility in ensuring his safe delivery.
Mira and her son are safe and healthy in the confidential Shakti safe-house and plan to stay for an additional month to ensure that all is well before they move. The Shakti staff have seen an increase in confidence and joy in Mira and a positive outlook for herself and her son’s future.
With such strong support from the Shakti team she is looking for a job, a shift out of the safe-house and to one day apply for residency in the country she has come to love.
“We are grateful to funders such as the Catholic Caring Foundation for allowing us to continue to do life- saving work.”
Every child deserves to feel safe
Equipping our young people with the skills to keep safe For too many of our young people, family life can be uncertain with families facing financial insecurity, and poor housing and in some cases violence in the home.
Every day the NZ police make 3331 investigations into family violence incidents. Three quarters of these incidents are witnessed by children.
In response to these sobering statistics, a resiliency and prevention programme called Jade Speaks Up was trialled to help students aged 8 – 12 learn how to keep themselves safe. The team at Marist Youth Development, Logos, who receive a grant through your donations, joined the trial to take the programme to a selection of Catholic schools.
“Jade Speaks Up is a very special programme to The Logos Project and it has an important purpose; to help young people keep themselves safe in any situation, particularly violence and to be specific family violence,” says Jennifer Martinez, Managing Director of the Logos Project, Marist Youth Development.
The programme was developed as a five-week family violence resiliency and prevention programme for students aged 8 – 12. It was designed to give students the tools and strategies to identify when they are not safe, to know the difference between safe and unsafe situations, and to make non-violent choices. The students also worked through a safety plan and established who the trusted adults in their lives were. The programme was specifically designed so young people would feel safe during the sessions, especially as often they would be exploring some scary topics.
Positive feedback has been received from the students who have undertaken the programme with many saying that they remember the skills that they have been taught, and others state that they have used the skills they have learned in unsafe situations.
“The Catholic Caring Foundation support has enabled us to do this meaningful work in Catholic secondary schools. Without this support we would not be able to offer this programme free of charge. We receive no other funding to do this programme, so we are deeply grateful for the support of the foundation for many years. We are thrilled to know that this programme is making a real difference in the lives of young people,” says Martinez.
Reference: 1 OIA Statistics 2017
A message from Bishop Pat
Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me. Matthew 25:40
These words from Matthew, remind us of God’s call to open our hearts to see the vulnerable and marginalised as our brothers and sisters. It also provides us with a unique starting point to contemplate what unites us instead of what divides us: our shared humanity.
We are called to see Christ’s face in everyone.
Over the next couple of months, many agencies and organisations throughout the greater Auckland area will be applying to the foundation for a grant to support their work in the coming year.
If you and your family are able to consider supporting my foundation, so we can support more of our brothers and sisters in need, your donation would be so appreciated.
Your support will mean a new and safe start for a mother and her newborn child. Your support will mean skills and strategies for young people to respond safely to violent situations. You do this as part of a connected family of faith who follow the gospel teachings to help when it is needed.
Please remember these organisations and our brothers and sisters they assist, in your prayers.
With your support and the support of those who have gone before us, we have been able to serve our community for 30 years. I am sincerely grateful.
Thank you for your prayers, support and your commitment to show care and compassion. Please know that you are making a difference in our community. Your support touches me greatly.
With every blessing,
How a gift in your Will can care for future generations
A gift that keeps on giving; keeping your values and faith alive.
Many supporters of the Foundation want to know that their Catholic faith and values, which they have cherished throughout their lives, will have some lasting and positive impact on future generations. That is why they have made provision in their Will to support the work of the Foundation well into the future.
If you would like your faith and values to live on, so that future generations will be cared for and supported, then please consider making your Will the Will of a Catholic and leave a gift to the Catholic Caring Foundation.
Leaving a gift in your Will is a most special and personal way of providing care and support to families and communities in the future, just like Mira and her baby. If this special gift is something you would like to discuss, then please call us (09) 360 3012 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org