Social Justice & Ecology

Reaching out to families of international prisoners

Members of the Prison Ministry team of Jesuit Foundation (Thailand) recently made a trip to Laos to visit the families of Laotian prisoners in Thailand and share news of the prisoners.  Over six days, the team visited 22 families as well as two ex-prisoners who were released last year.

The need for the “heart” dimension in our living spaces

Will creating more social spaces in Singapore lead to the sprouting of more social communities? In this concrete jungle we live in today, where do we fit in? How can modern architecture lend a hand in softening Singapore’s concrete jungle, making it a more liveable place? These were some of the questions considered at the forum@KINGSMEAD dialogue and reflection on “Mankind and Urbanisation at the Cross Roads”, held at the Kingsmead Centre for Ignatian Spirituality and Counselling on August 19, 2014.

A path out of unemployment

The path to finding employment can be long and difficult, particularly for those who have been out of the workforce for an extended period of time. For those seeking work, the process can feel like being stuck in a never-ending cycle of applications and knockbacks.

For a while, Zac felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel. Despite being engaged with an employment service, he was having no luck securing work in the highly competitive Melbourne job market.

Jesuits in Africa join the fight against Ebola

Ignorance, prejudice and fear are the first enemies to fight if you want to eradicate the Ebola virus, and the African Jesuit AIDS Network (AJAN) is getting involved in the fight by providing culturally sensitive information that is urgently needed to increase understanding of the virus and address the fears of the people.

God, people and planning

Have you ever seen or walked into a fancy handbag boutique selling the likes of Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Dolce and Gabbana? Even if we have never walked into one, we all know that these bags are pricey, high class, and beyond the reach of most people. What about bags branded “Rag2Riches”? You can find them in major shopping malls in the Philippines and in Anthropologie shops in Singapore, Malaysia and many countries in Europe.

The Planet Is Our Home

There is no institution so old that it has nothing left to learn – and the Catholic Church must commit to learning about and changing its practices in relation to ecological issues. This was the message from Colombian Jesuit Fr José Mesa, Secretary of Primary and Secondary Education at the Jesuit Curia in Rome and one of the keynote speakers at the JCAP Education Colloquium in Sydney.

The difference a boat can make

Rommel Villanueva is one of the survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, known as Yolanda in the Philippines.  A fisherman in Barangay Binudac in the island of Culion, his boat was destroyed by Haiyan, which was one of the strongest tropical storms ever recorded.  With no boat, Rommel, 29, was dependent on other boat owners if he wanted to fish and provide for his wife and two young children.  For months he had to look for space on a boat every day in order to fish, and if no boat owner would take him, then he was not able to fish that day.

Fr John Carroll SJ: Requiescat in pace

Fr John Carroll SJ, founder of the Institute on Church and Social Issues in the Philippines which was later renamed after him, died in the afternoon of July 17, 2014. He was 90 years old.

Syria: daily heroism witnessed by Caritas Switzerland

On June 19, Jesuit Refugee Service Syria was honoured with the 2014 Prix Caritas award in a ceremony in Lucerne, Switzerland. Nawras Sammour SJ, JRS Middle East North Africa Director, received the award on behalf of JRS Syria.

The award honours JRS for its "tireless and courageous commitment for the benefit of the persecuted and suffering people in Syria. For bearing witness in the form of humanitarian aid, standing by people in need irrespective of their religious and ethnic affiliations".

Accompanying People on the Move

On January 19, 2014 some 5,000 people took to the streets of Hong Kong and gathered outside the police headquarters to demand justice for Erwiana, an Indonesian maid abused by her Hong Kong employer. They were members of Indonesian and Filipino migrant worker unions as well as representatives of various human rights groups in the country.

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