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Christian Aid joins global alliance to better reach those in need

Christian Aid is to strengthen its ties with other church-based charities around the world to form an alliance providing emergency relief and development aid in 125 countries.

With a combined budget of more than £1 billion, members of the ACT Alliance are able to provide emergency food aid, shelter, water, sanitation and poverty reduction programmes more efficiently in the world’s poorest countries.

When it officially launches on 24 March, the ACT Alliance will become one of the largest international networks channelling emergency and development aid from both public and private donors to the people who need it most in the developing world.

Other members of the ACT Alliance include church development organisations such as: Norwegian Church Aid, Church World Service (US-based) and Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe of Germany.

When disaster strikes, it is often the churches in the developing world which are the first to respond. Because of their deep roots in local communities, they are already well placed to offer help where the need is greatest.

Nigel Timmins, who manages Christian Aid’s emergency relief responses in Asia and Latin America, said: 'When cyclone Nargis hit Burma in May 2008, local pastors were amongst the first on the scene, wading into the flood water to rescue people before they were swept away.

'In the Tsunami, too, it was pastors and congregation members who risked their lives to rescue people on the beach between the waves. Emergency relief supplies of food and water were also provided within hours of the disaster by Christian Aid-supported organisations that were already based in India and Sri Lanka.'

More recently, money raised by Christian Aid helped victims of the Chile earthquake. It was sent to the Chilean ACT Alliance member, FASIC, to buy food, shelter materials and improve water and sanitation facilities.

The same principle also works in reverse. In Haiti, medical supplies and hygiene kits sent from the US by Church World Service were passed on to Aprosifa, a health clinic and community resource that Christian Aid has supported for years.  By working together, ACT Alliance members are able to target the aid much more effectively.

ACT Alliance General Secretary John Nduna says the creation of the alliance of church-based organisations means that ACT’s humanitarian and development work will reach every corner of the globe.

'The membership of the ACT Alliance is wide. We find ACT members in every part of the world. ACT members are grounded in local civil society of all parts of the world. Almost everywhere we have churches, we have ACT.'

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For more information, pictures, videos or interview requests, please contact Sarah Wilson on +44 207 523 2277 or +44 7930 341 525 or swilson@christian-aid.org

Notes to Editors: 

1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 50 countries. We act where the need is greatest, regardless of religion, helping people build the life they deserve. 

2. Poverty is an outrage against humanity. It robs people of dignity, freedom and hope, of power over their own lives. Christian Aid has a vision – an end to poverty – and we believe that vision can become a reality. We urge you to join us. 


Act Alliance

Christian Aid has a vision – an end to poverty – and we believe that vision can become a reality. We work with the world’s poorest people in around 50 countries, regardless of race or faith. We are part of ACT Alliance, the ecumenical relief and development network.

The Christian Aid name and logo are trademarks of Christian Aid. Poverty Over is a trademark of Christian Aid.