International Engagements

Engaging with Global Partners

We are proud to call Africa home.

The nature of our mission, however, makes it imperative for us to engage with global partners. There has been plenty of action on this front in the last few months. Towards the end of 2016, CYNESA became one of the newest partners of the International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD). Established in February 2016, at the Berlin conference “Partners for Change – Religions and the 2030 Agenda”, PaRD brings together members and partners from all over the world in order to harness the positive impact of religion in sustainable development and humanitarian assistance. As we implement our long-term plan on the Sustainable Development Goals, we look forward to offering leadership in mobilizing young faith voices, towards realizing the 2030 Agenda.

Allen and Amy Echeverria from Columbans International_Assisi Discussions

Amy Echeverria, JPIC Coordinator at Columbans International in a conversation with Allen. (Photo Credit: GCCM).

In late January, the CYNESA Executive Director, Allen Ottaro, took part in the strategic planning meeting of the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM), held in Assisi, Italy. Leaders from GCCM’s Steering Committee and new Board gathered for 4 days of reflection, community building and strategizing to guide GCCM in the next phase of its journey. The highlight of the meeting was an encounter at the Vatican, between Pope Francis and some of the GCCM delegates, who presented him with a gift of ‘climate ribbon prayers’ that had been collected at last year’s World Youth Day in Krakow and the Assisi gathering.

Pope Francis_Climate Ribbons

The Holy Father had words of gratitude and encouragement, which he delivered during the public audience. Allen is a member of GCCM’s Steering Committee, while CYNESA was instrumental in organizing and running the ‘Laudato Si’ Eco Village’ program, offered by GCCM and partners at World Youth Day in Krakow, in July 2016.

Herbert Kiennast of DKA Austria and Allen Ottaro

Herbert Kiennast (DKA Austria) and Allen at DKA offices in Vienna.

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During his visit in Europe the CYNESA ED had the opportunity to meet with Mr. Herbert Kiennast of DKA Austria, where the discussed potential areas of partnership. Mr. Kiennast had visited the CYNESA office in Nairobi in February 2016, and the meeting in Vienna offered a good opportunity to catch up. Sticking to his tight itinerary, the ED proceeded to Speyer and Aachen in Germany, where he had similar engagements with officials from the Catholic Diocese of Speyer, and those of Misereor and Kindermissionswerk, the latter two based in Aachen.

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