Bishop John Rawsthorne, Chair Board of Trustees, and Noreen Lockhart, Head of Directorate, visited Sierra Leone and Liberia on 26 April to 4 May 2011.

The purpose of the visit was to know more about CAFOD’s work and level of interaction with the Bishops conferences in the region and to interact with the Freetown Office team.

During this visit Bishop John and Noreen met with the Archbishop of Freetown, His Grace Edward Tamba Charles and celebrated mass with him. They also visited one of CAFOD partners under the Comic Relief-funded CONNECT Programme, The Network Movement for Justice and Development programme  areas meeting with the beneficiaries to listen to their (beneficiaries) own stories in depicting the impact of the programme.

The Bishop also had a 15 minutes interview session at the Capital Radio Station accompanied by Dennis Momoh, Advocacy Officer talking about CAFOD’s work in the Mano River Region whilst Noreen and the rest of the Freetown team had a detailed interactive session on “Just One World” and its implications at field level.

Initial planning of the visit was focused on Sierra Leone but this was adjusted to focus more on the current exigencies in Liberia regarding the Ivorian refugee influx and CAFOD’s response with partners (caritas Gbarnga, Don Bosco Homes and Centre for Justice and Peace Studies). Bishop John and team therefore visited Glarlay in Nimba County, Liberia to have first-hand insight on the situation and to see the impact of CAFOD’s response and intervention on the Ivory Coast situation.

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