Next Friday (March 21) the Rector of St Marks in Ballymacash, Canon George Irwin, will join a team of eight Christian Aid Ireland supporters as they travel to Zimbabwe in Southern Africa.
The group, all from different churches and communities throughout Ireland, will spend ten days visiting Christian Aid partners around Zimbabwe.
They will see how these local partners are empowering men, women and children to overcome the challenges they face and to bring about a transformation in their communities.
Canon Irwin has been a life-long supporter of Christian Aid and has served as Chairman of the Lisburn Committee since 1995.
He is looking forward to the visit and the opportunity to witness the work of Christian Aid’s Zimbabwean partners first-hand.
Christian Aid has been involved in Zimbabwe since 1980 and now works with twelve local partners who run projects across the country.
Christian Aid has strong relationships with Zimbabwean churches and partners, implementing projects which are concerned with a wide range of issues including food security, water conservation, education, HIV, health, human rights, gender equality and peace building.
Canon Irwin and the team will be paying a visit to a number of these projects. As part of their trip they will be travelling to the remote district of Binga, where Christian Aid partner ‘Open Schools Worldwide’ operates an educational programme for children, aimed at bringing education directly to those who need it, through training teachers and providing a ‘School in a Bag’. Although fairly new, this is an exciting project to be visiting as it has proven highly successful in South Africa.
Canon Irwin is busy preparing for his trip and is looking forward to meeting with the individuals and organisations who are fundamentally changing lives for whole communities in Zimbabwe.
He would like to express his appreciation of all the encouragement and support he has received from the Diocese, the Parish of Ballymacash and the local community in Lisburn.