CIDSE, the international alliance of 17 Catholic development organisations from Europe and North America, will today launch (1s July 2015) a three year (2015-2017) campaign on sustainable lifestyles: “Change for the Planet – Care for the People.”
“CIDSE and its members call for policy changes and sustainable lifestyle choices. We believe that collective and individual changes are crucial to respond to the urgency we face through climate change, environmental degradation and the consequence they have on people’s lives.” said Bernd Nilles, CIDSE Secretary General.
The campaign links Catholic development work for social justice with the promotion of sustainable living. The global over-exploitation of natural resources puts people and planet at risk, and those suffering most are vulnerable communities and the poor. Furthermore, ethical standards being overlooked in the production phase and throughout the supply chain creates a situation which is tolerant and creates further human rights violations. People often want to consume fair and sustainable products, but politics and markets do not follow this demand, by putting profit before people’s interest.
Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato si’, states: “Every effort to protect and improve our world entails profound changes in lifestyles, models of production and consumption, and the established structures of power which today govern societies”. This campaign aims at contributing to these changes. As Pope Francis affirms, we are convinced that “a change in lifestyle could bring healthy pressure to bear on those who wield political, economic and social power”.
“Change for the Planet – Care for the People” therefore calls for a radical change in people’s lifestyles towards living simply and making different and more conscious choices. This campaign will focus over the next three years on energy and food consumption, by calling for better policies as well as on everybody to do their share. Through social media activities, workshops and events we will invite people to make a difference through their daily choices, and to contribute this way to building a better world: cut the amount of the energy you use, buy local and sustainably produced food, place priority on taking public transport, and eat less meat- are examples of daily practices that count. Several successful models of sustainable living all around the world already exist, and our campaign will also be a platform for them to resonate and be tried out by other people. The campaign will further connect people and mobilise the Catholic movement.
In 2015 we especially look to the UN Climate summit in Paris – COP21 (30 November – 12 December) as the key political opportunity to call for a fair global deal for people and planet. Central to this is phasing out fossil fuels and phasing in 100% renewables with sustainable energy access for all. We want to show people’s power to bring about the change we call for, and which policy makers are not delivering. We join our voice with the voices of thousands of people that will mobilise before and during COP21 in Paris and all around the world calling for new models of well-being and development in order to prevent further climate change and to promote justice.
Note to the editors
CIDSE is an international alliance of Catholic development agencies working together for global justice. Our 17 member organisations from Europe and North America come together under the umbrella of CIDSE to fight poverty and inequality. We challenge governments, business, churches, and international bodies to adopt policies and behaviors that promote human rights, social justice and sustainable development. These are important elements of our mission, which we try to achieve through joint advocacy, campaigning and development cooperation work. We work with people of all faiths and none.
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