Each year during Lent the people of St Margarets Roman Catholic Church parish commit to helping some of the poorest people on our planet. This year they are supporting the villagers of Panimach{e’} in Guatemala and children and babies orphaned in Uganda. If you would like to help you can send a donation to St Margarets RC Church Lenten Project and drop it in at the Parish House opposite St Margarets BR Station.

On 4th October 2005 Hurricane Stan began to batter Central America with a week of torrential rains which left 670 people dead and 844 disappeared (and presumed dead) in Guatemala. According to the UN World Food Program an estimated 285,000 people are still at risk of severe hunger after their subsistence crops and food reserves were destroyed by the rains and resulting floods and mudslides. Fields were saturated or slid away down the mountain sides and many people lost their crops of maize. The export crop of sesame was destroyed. The heavy rains also affected the coffee crop, bringing an early harvest and much lower than expected yields. St Margarets parish has committed to raising £15,000 to assist in rebuilding a small mountain village called Panimach{e’} in the quiche department of Guatemala where 109 families have lost their homes. The village is near Lake Atitl{a’}n in the western highlands. During the hurricane mudslides swept down the mountains burying their homes and the river overflowed destroying their crops. Fortunately, no one died. Our support will enable CAFOD partner Caritas Quich{e’} to work with the community to rebuild their houses. If the parish raise more than £15,000 the remainder will go to the International Refugee Trust’s Children’s Home in Uganda. The Redeemer Children’s Home and The Moyo Babies’ Home had to be moved in 2003 when rebel forces of the Lord’s Resistance Army crossed the boarder from Sudan and attacked and kidnapped 16 orphans. For the past 14 years the LRA rebels have attacked remote refugee camps, stealing food and animals, hacking people to death and stealing children who are forced to become child soldiers. The histories of many of the orphans in the Redeemer Children’s Home include witnessing the murders of their parents, escaping from LRA forces and surviving rape and torture. The civil war in Sudan has contributed to the problems of poverty and the insecurity of the entire area. St Margarets parish Lenten Project will help to rebuild the home that was lost in 2003 but in a safer location. It is home to over 60 children aged 6 to 18.

Alternatively you could support one of the many events that are taking place.

  • Sunday 23rd April Don Rush will run for the 26th time in the London Marathon with his long time running partner Rush Yadave. They are grateful for sponsors in support of the Lenten Project. As two of the ‘evegreens’ they will get to start with the elite runners.
  • Saturday, 29th April Grand Jumble Sale — 11am St Margarets Church Hall.
  • Saturday, 21st May Family Fun Day — 12.00 onwards.

Thank you for your support and interest.