The cry of the earth and the cry of the poor: sustainable livelihoods in Zambia

Sister Yvonne Mwalula Mwila, our partner from the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, is helping communities in Zambia to transform their lives. We are pleased to announce Sister Yvonne will be speaking in Walthamstow and other regional events in England and Wales ahead of Lent Fast Day.

Sister Yvonne writes: “I am a Religious Sister in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary which I entered in 1997. _mgl9326

The Founder of our Congregation asked us to serve the poor of the poorest in our society. “To go where no one wants to go and do what nobody wants to do. Because for you dear sisters there are only two things that matters, Jesus Christ and the poor, the moment you forget this, you should cease to exist” we do try to accomplish this calling in our Programme in Mbala”.

In the light of the HIV and AIDS pandemic, the Sacred Heart Sisters committed themselves to respond to urgent needs. It was with this situation in mind, that the Sisters established the Households In Distress (HID) Programme in 1991 which contributes to the reduction of the impact of HIV and AIDS on the infected and most affected families in communities through quality care and support and livelihoods initiatives.

The HID Programme carries out its various interventions in Mbala district through the provision of information, education and commuication; home based care; livelihoods/village orphan support groups and orphans and education for  vulnerable children.


Sister Yvonne is also working alongside farmers to help them grow drought-resistant crops, so they can stand up again on their own two feet. The communities she supports are gradually lifting themselves out of poverty and sending their children to school. Our neighbours are also protecting the planet by installing solar panels on their homes.


Sr Yvonne will be speaking about our work at Our Lady & St George parish hall in Walthamstow on Wednesday 22 February at 7.30pm. The full address is Our Lady & St George Catholic Parish, Shernhall Street, Walthamstow, E17 9HU. The talk will be preceded by an opportunity to participate in a beautiful Lampedusa Cross lent-2017-photo‘pilgrimage’ and liturgy in the church. ALL ARE WELCOME. If you would like to attend Sr Yvonne’s talk, please register or contact us at or call 01277 218730

If you are unable to join us for her talk in Walthamstow, Sr Yvonne will be talking online
the following day. Join us online on Thursday, 23 February from 1pm to 2pm to listen to Sr Yvonne’s talk.


Join us for one of our Lent Fast Day 2017 briefings

Learn more on how a fish the size of your thumb in Florence’s hands can become school books, a home and a future for her children. Share ideas with other volunteers about how you can raise awareness in your parish.

Join us for one of our Lent Fast Day briefings at:florence

Southend – Thursday 9 February from 7.30pm until 9pm at Sacred Heart Parish Hall, 418 Southchurch Road, SS1 2QB Register for this event

Brentwood – Saturday 11 February from 10.30pm until 12.30pm at Cathedral House, Ingrave Road, Brentwood CM15 8AT Register for this event

Brentwood – Wednesday 15 February from 10.30am  until 12.30pm at Cathedral House, Ingrave Road, Brentwood CM15 8AT Register for this event

Walthamstow – Wednesday 22 February from 7pm until 7.30pm followed by talk from CAFOD’s partner in Zambia, Sr Yvonne at Our Lady and St George, 132 Shernhall St, Walthamstow, E17 9HU. Register for this event

 Wanstead – Monday 27 February from 8pm until 9.30pm at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish hall,  51 Cambridge Park, Wanstead, E11 2PR Register for this event

For more information contact the CAFOD Brentwood volunteer centre at or call 01277 218730.

Putting the pieces together: Understanding CAFOD 28/1/17:


Understanding CAFOD can be a slightly puzzling experience. There are several layers to our work, and we have a range of departments and teams working on a whole host of projects and functions. Even people who know quite a lot about us are often surprised about what we do, where we do it and how we are doing it. For example, although our work in helping to support those who are affected by famine and disaster might be more widely known, our projects to promote peace, reconciliation and human rights might be less so.

And many people are unaware of our humble beginnings back in the early 1960s and of just how much the values that inspired us then are right at the core of what we are doing now.

What makes us distinctive? How do we communicate our  work, our values and our ethos?

Put the pieces together

If you are a new or current volunteer, or someone who is just interested in our work, , then join us for a highly interesting and stimulating day at St Francis of Assisi parish hall in Stratford on Saturday 28 January from 10.30am until 4pm. Book your place by calling 01277 218730 or email

We hope that you’ll find that there’s much more to us than you first thought!