JPIC Report: Oct. 2012

Justice, Peace & Integrity of Creation Seminar 2012

The four JPIC Captains this year from transition year are: Heloise Imbert, Abby Bowden, Beth McAllesse and Olwyn Mooney.

Report By Heloise Imbert:

Our first presentation of the Loreto JPIC seminar in Emmaus Retreat Centre Swords was a school presentation with the familiar faces of two Beaufort students in fifth year- Eve Conlon and Laura Candon who were two of the JPIC captains last year. They gave us a PowerPoint presentation about what their goals were for JPIC, how they set about to achieve their goals and what they did in school and in the community to help the Gobal South. The PowerPoint was extremely helpful and gave us many ideas on how our year could help to become more involved in JPIC and create effective awareness campaigns.

The Beaufort presentation was followed by a talk about the work of Trócaire by Justin Kilcullen who is the director of Trócaire. Justin told us about some causes of poverty in the Global South: which were civil wars, climate (drought / sudden torrential rain) and tied aid from the Global North, Aids / HIV.

Instead of giving the Developing World food aid, Trócaire introduced irrigation schemes to provide more water for farms, drought-resistant seeds and land work.

We were told that Trócaire doesn’t believe in sending immediate or emergency aid but instead sends development aid which is long and hard to set up yet it leads to a more independent and efficient future for the developing world.

Trócaire also worked on the Land Equity Movement of Uganda which stopped poor women and families being taken advantage of for their farms which they needed but First World countries wanted the crops to make palm oil fuel for cars from which they would make an enormous profit and almost none of the profit would go to the people from which they took the farm.

Our next topic was about how to improve our language when talking about the Developing World and the Developed World and it was a presentation called Learning to Unlearn by Annette Honan. I found this talk very helpful as she showed us how to talk about problems in the Global South without us sounding as if we think that we are superior to people in need.

She gave us phrases and words as an alternative approach when talking about different countries and aid such as “working alongside” rather than “helping” or “justice and fairness” instead of “aid”.

After lunch we had a Trócaire workshop by Bríd Dunne who showed us the difference between solidarity and charity by getting us involved in different situations and we had to choose what we thought solidarity meant as a group and then we had to prove our point to her.

Next we had our Young Social Innovators seminar by Sharon Murray. This was one of my favourite talks as she gave us many fun ideas to raise awareness about topics.

She also made us work as a team in various games which were all about teamwork and co-operating on the best way to solve the problem at hand. We also did an exercise about human rights during the YSI talk and were given different situations and we had to choose which rights they were being denied and why this was wrong.

During the evening we had another PowerPoint presentation about Loreto International by Sr Louise O’Sullivan. We found Sr. Louise O’ Sullivan’s talk very inspiring and powerful as she had personal stories and images that she told us about when she was in Loreto schools around the globe. She told us about the work that her and her fellow  .colleagues had done for the Loreto schools in Kenya and Kolkata such as building schools (primary and secondary), working in orphanages with sick children whose parents had either died or were extremely ill with aids, children who were victims of FGM and children who were abandoned at the orphanage by relatives who could no longer look after them.

In the night we had a reflection led by Ms. Donohue which was about being thankful for our opportunity’s that we got in life and also leaving our sorrows and worries in stones that everyone got and when the reflection was over we left the stones around the JPIC cross and it was like we were leaving our worries behind.

After a long days work we had our last cup of tea and socialised with other JPIC captains from all around Ireland and we got to know each other very well.

The following day we had a very interesting seminar by Patsy Toland who is the Development Education Co-ordinator of Self-Help Africa. This was by far the best presentation as he showed us how our little day to day actions could reflect in the Developing world. He simply did this with talking about the contents of his shopping bag. We were informed that the brands Coca-Cola and Nestle were a big contributor to poverty in Developing countries as they just used the produce and didn’t pay the workers and in some cases they destroyed the surrounding habitat just to get an ingredient. The work of Self Help Africa is to bring the message of African futures to a wider audience. They also work with rural communities to help them improve their farms and livelihoods.

The last project of the day was to come up with our action plan for our JPIC group in Beaufort for 2012 / 2013

Héloise Imbert.

JPIC Report By Beth AcAleese

On the 9th of October, four of the JPIC captions, Heloise Imbert, Olwyn Mooney, Abby Bowden and myself , went to a JPIC conference to Emmaus Retreat Centre.

We arrived early for the conference and spent the day attentively listening to presentations and speeches about the world around us and how unjust certain issues are, and how we can help.

We learned a lot through out the first day of these presentations and workshops. We learned the difference between solidarity and charity and how we can show and define these differences and issues in our school community.

After the first day of learning about the issues of the world, we had a reflection, held by our own Chaplain, Ms Donohue. Through-out this reflection we had a chance to breath in all the new knowledge we learned, and also a chance to connect with God.

After this long and eventful day we were all very tired, so we attended the social and talked with the other Loreto JPIC girls and then went to our rooms to go to rest after a very tiring day.

On the second day we woke up and enjoyed breakfast, and then carried out multiple work shops and learned of new charity and solidarity groups such as Self Help Africa and the work of many others.

I really enjoyed the two days and we have lots of ideas to implement in the year ahead!

By Beth Mc Aleese