Christian Aid Week
Christian Aid Week is an annual door-to-door fundraising drive by the charity Christian Aid. The drive is held each year in Britain during the second week of May, when thousands of volunteers post red collection envelopes to households around the country. Held each year since 1957 the event celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2007, making it Britain’s longest running fundraising week.
Christian Aid works with 700 local organisations across 50 developing countries. Working with poor communities, it trains people to deal with the effects of climate change and prepares them for the threat of natural disasters. These local organisations – or ‘partners’ – also work on HIV, training and education, health and sanitation and peace and reconciliation.
In 2007 the organisation encouraged people to plant trees in support of its overseas work on climate change projects. The charity aimed to raise £15.5 million from the annual fundraising week in 2007, and approximately 300,000 volunteers across the United Kingdom posted the well known red envelopes through millions of letterboxes.
In 2013, £12.6 million (or 13% percent of the total income) were raised during this week.
In 1945 the British and Irish churches establish the Christian Reconstruction in Europe. Its purpose is to raise funds for the resettlement of some of the millions of people left homeless by the war.
In 1948, it was renamed the Inter-Church Aid and Refugee Service, and became part of the British Council of Churches. During the next decade, the organisation began to move into worldwide development work. The overriding theme was the promotion of self-reliance.
In 1957, Janet Lacey, the organisation’s then director, decided to hold a “Christian Aid Week” to encourage public awareness. This first event mobilised residents in 200 towns and villages across Britain, collecting £26,000 for overseas development work.
In 1964 the agency changed its name to Christian Aid. During the 1960s, the threat of hunger, even famine, made agricultural development a priority in the poorest regions of the world, especially Africa and Asia. As well as overseas aid, Christian Aid began to tell Church supporters and schools about the causes of poverty and helped establish the World Development Movement.
- Curtis, Gretta (2007-03-20). "Christian Aid to Celebrate Golden Jubilee with Green Campaign". Christian Today. Retrieved 2007-03-03.
- "Annual Report 2012-2013" (PDF). Christian Aid.