Social Justice News – August 25, 2016

August 24, 2016

We live in a time of unprecedented growth of science and technology, yet moral, ethical, and spiritual growth have not matched these developments. Our society is a hyperactive one with much cause for distraction from the most significant issues of the world. Not least of which is the growing unequal distribution of wealth in the world -“ recent research by Credit Suisse identifies that half of the world’s wealth rests with only 1% of the world’s population.

Social Justice has always been a large part of St. Patrick’s College, which is why there are so many rich experiences where students have the opportunity to help those less fortunate. Running parallel with these experiences is the St. Vinnie’s and Social Justice groups, which invite students to work in solidarity to support others who are less fortunate.

A growing number of students are choosing to accept and work towards protecting the dignity of their fellow human beings. In this pursuit, the students continue to breathe life through the Edmund Rice Education Australia’s touchstones that guide our community at St. Patrick’s. This is done through their commitment to justice and solidarity, in an inclusive community where all are able to attend and contribute, and most significantly through actions that are based on gospel spirituality.

Below you will find an example of a significant international issue, as highlighted by Year 8 students, Will Frawley and Jonathan Debono:

Although you may be reminded about it every day, it’s true. There are many less fortunate people than ourselves who don’t have a home, food, a clean water source and/or education. Recently there was a Social Justice meeting discussing some issues occurring all around the world, and today we would like to discuss some of the issues occurring in East Timor.

Between 1975 – 1999, 100,000 – 250,000 people living in East Timor died during the Indonesian Occupation, which was a war between the two countries. Unfortunately, the anti-independence militia displaced 75 percent of the population, resulting in a lack of food, water, hospitality and other essential services. Civil unrest in 2006 resulted in the displacement of a further 150,000 people, some of which are still based in refugee camps. Many households do not have enough food or money to support themselves, and diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis kill 50 out of every 1000 children born.

Thankfully, many charities have been able to support East Timor. Caritas is one of these. Among other things Caritas assists in teaching women’s groups in different villages safe food processing, thereby increasing household health, sanitation and nutrition. Caritas also provided local communities with over 27,000 seedlings to increase soil fertility, reduce erosion, and increase food production. If you are interested in helping communities such as East Timor, please look out for the next Social Justice Meeting in the morning notices.

Thank you,

Will Frawley and Jonathan Debono-

If you’re interested in finding out more about Social Justice and helping those less fortunate please contact Art Nichols