Vilia with her sons outside their Christian Aid built hurricane resistant home

Christian Aid Week highlights 2018

Another Christian Aid Week has successfully come and gone. Amongst all the coffee mornings and church collections, we devoured big brekkies, took leaps of faith by abseiling, and honoured our volunteers. This year’s Christian Aid Week, which took place in May, focused on our work to support people who have been forced to flee their homes by conflict and extreme weather in places such as Haiti. In order to reflect on the week’s events, we’ve gathered a few highlights for you to enjoy.

Our volunteers inspired us

We are incredibly grateful and blessed to have such dedicated volunteers. Year on year, they go above and beyond in their efforts to support Christian Aid’s work and the people we serve overseas. This year we honoured volunteers from across the country with our special recognition ‘Diamond’ award. We presented Diamond awards to Sylvia Armitage and Gillian Kingston from Tipperary and Trudy Jefferys from Kildare. They’ve each organised many collections and events and raised significant donations in support of Christian Aid. We want to let our volunteers know that their efforts never go unnoticed and we are truly appreciative of their hard work. Well done ladies!

Diamond Awards 2018

Pictured: Diamond award recipients (L to R), Gillian Kingston, Sylvia Armitage with Rev Shannon DeLaurel.

Photo: Christian Aid Ireland / Jane Burns

Pictured: Rev. Fran Grasham, Jane Burns, Trudy Jeffers and Dean Tim Wright

Pictured: Rev. Fran Grasham, Jane Burns, Trudy Jeffers, and Dean Tim Wright.

Photo: Christian Aid Ireland

Supporters braved the elements during our 24-hour solidarity sleep-out

On the 11th of May, a team of sturdy volunteers and staff braved the elements as they pitched their tents to spent 24 hours in Buoy Park, in the middle of Belfast. The sleep-out is a symbol of solidarity with the millions of people who have been uprooted from within their own countries because of violence, war or natural disasters. 

We were delighted to welcome local politicians from all parties and the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Nuala McAllister, to Buoy Park to hear stories from our projects and also to listen to what we can all do at home to help those in need.

We’ve been experiencing an unprecedented sunny summer this year however, on this day in May, the heavens opened, and it rained non-stop. Those who spent the entire 24 hours braved the elements. In a small way, they were able to imagine something of what the people in Haiti had to face nearly 8 years ago when Hurricane Matthew hit, except in Belfast they could go home afterwards to their warm homes. 

Lord Mayor supports Christian Aid Ireland's Solidarity Sleep-Out

Pictured at the sleep-out was: (L - R) Leah Ward and her father Elwin, Rosamond Bennett Chief Executive of Christian Aid and Lord Mayor of Belfast Nuala McAllister.

Photo: Press Eye

People took a leap of faith for us down Belfast Castle

This year, with the help of world champion MMA fighter Leah McCourt, 36 adventurous supporters took a leap of faith for Christian Aid Week. This was our first time adding such an event to our list of ‘things to do’ for Christian Aid Week and going by the smiles on the faces on the day, it’s safe to say it was a success. One of my favourite stories from the day came from our youngest abseiler, Lewis Doherty (12). In his own words, he fancies himself as “a solider type of guy, cool, adventurous and fit”.  Along with his grandad, (65), who was our oldest participant, they took on the challenge to abseil the 100ft down Belfast Castle. Lewis took on the challenge as part of his Scout training. Initially setting a target of £250, he raised over £700. Well done Lewis, and grandad! 

Lewis and his Grandad

Pictured: (L - R) Lewis Doherty (12), our youngest abseiler and his granddad (65), our oldest.

Photo: Press Eye

Leah McCourt Takes a leap of faith

Northern Ireland's MMA world champion, Leah McCourt took a leap of faith for Christian Aid Ireland on Saturday 14th April by abseiling the 400 ft. descent down Belfast Castle.

Photo: Press Eye

We connected over coffee

Each year you, our supporters, host 100s of coffee mornings, voluntarily giving up your time and money to raise awareness and funds for our appeals. Whether you spend days baking or simply buy a few buns in the shop, coffee mornings never fail to deliver. This year we hosted a coffee morning for the first time in St. Patricks Cathedral, Dublin as part of Christian Aid Week. Our guest of honour was the Dean of the Cathedral, The Very Revd. Dr William Morton. Christian Aid’s Dee, Katherine and Jane were on hand to offer tea, coffee and baked goods to visitors to the Cathedral, who came from all parts of the world, and to chat to them about our work abroad.

Dean of St Pat's, Dr William Morton with staff and volunteers

Pictured: Catherine Dowd, Jane Burns, Dee Huddleston and The Very Revd Dr. William Morton, Dean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral enjoying a cup of tea for Christian Aid Week.

Photo: Mark Stedman

Coffee Morning TIPP

Tipperary Roscrea Methodist Church host Christian Aid Week coffee morning.

Photo: Christian Aid

Christian Aid Week 2018: The Reason

40 million people globally have had to flee their homes, due to war or natural disasters, in places like Haiti and Colombia.
Along with Christian Aid partners, we are helping those who have had to endure some of the worst natural disasters on earth to build a stronger life for themselves. 

Christian Aid Week 2018 focused on our work in poor countries like Haiti, where we have helped build safer homes and helped families to recover from natural disasters. Read Vilia's story here

Thank you once again for your support during Christian Aid Week and beyond.

If you would like to host an event for Christian Aid at any time of the year, we’d love to talk to you. Check out how you can take part here. 

Please contact us by email at, or or phone our Dublin, 01 496 7040, or Belfast offices 028 906 48133.