RENATE member, Monica Chickwe, som, reflects on ‘’Who is my brother?’’ at the Voices of Faith event held in the Vatican, Rome, in honour of International Women’s Day, 7 March, 2017.


Voices of Faith is an annual event marking International Women’s Day, bringing together voices of Catholic women from around the globe.
This year’s theme was Stirring the Waters: Making the Impossible Possible.
RENATE member, Monica Chickwe, som, presented her reflection on ‘’Who is my Brother?’’ at the Liturgy held on the 8th March. Please see the full text here….
Watch the Voices of Faith 2017 event at the Vatican, at
Please click the link to read: The reflection at Mass during the International Conference Voices of Faith, Vatican City, Rome, 8th March 2017.
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.

61st meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women- CSW61.


The 61st gathering of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW61), – the annual gathering of States to address critical issues related to gender equality and women’s rights- takes place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 13th-24th March 2017.
This year’s theme is Women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work’.
The Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd and the Sisters of Mercy have submitted a joint statement on the priority theme, which is accessible here: Englishen Español (4 pps; PDF)
Further information about CSW61 can be found as follows:
Brochure: Englishen Español (8 pps; PDF)
CSW61 in focus (stories, photo essays, video, infographic, social media and more).
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications.

Honouring St. Bakhita’s day in the Netherlands, February 2017.



RENATE member, Ivonne van de Kar, founder of Zusterwerk, (Sisterworks Foundation) (English version), a new Foundation in the Netherlands that continued the work of the Religious Against Trafficking, was especially active in organising awareness-raising activities and events in the Netherlands, to honour the International Day of Awareness and Prayer against Human Trafficking on the feast of St. Bakhita, 8th February. Please click here to read the full report.

UN GiftBox Campaign touching hearts and minds in Ireland.


During March, APT Ireland (Act to Prevent Trafficking) together with the Loreto Congregation, are bringing the UNGiftBox to a number of cities throughout Ireland. They are encouraged by the numbers of the general public, whose hearts and minds have been touched by the Campaign. Government of Ireland Tainaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, made time to visit the Campaign and wished the team of volunteers every success with the Campaign. The Campaign has featured on the national news RTE Six-One, on the 6th of March and continues to make news at local and regional levels as it travels around Ireland until the end of the month.
For more, please see
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications person.

International Women’s Day, 2017. Be Bold for Change!


International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities. It is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. Please click here for more:

‘’You have no choice. You are abroad, amongst foreigners.’’ (Survivor of human trafficking).


In 2016, RENATE members and their organisations in a number of European countries including the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, participated in a film entitled Made in God’s Image, commissioned by the Conference of Major Superiors of Women Religious and the Slovak Catholic Charity. The film was produced by social and spiritual documentary filmmaker, Iva KúšiKová, ssps, and is available at Please click the link to read the full report:

Increasing numbers of unaccompanied and separated children is a striking feature of recent UNHCR Report ‘’Desperate Journeys.’’


Despite increased border restrictions introduced in 2016 on refugee and migrant movements to and within Europe, a recent UNHCR Report indicates that people continued to move. With restrictions and closures of legal, formerly accessible routes, more dangerous journeys were undertaken, with increased risks of trafficking. Especially vulnerable are women and children, in particular unaccompanied children and minors. Reports continue to be received about refugees and migrants kidnapped, physically and sexually abused, tortured or extorted by smugglers and criminal gangs along key routes.
The Report finds that the main entry point to Europe is the Central Mediterranean route, from North Africa to Italy. In total, some 181, 436 people arrived in Italy in 2016 by sea, 90% of whom travelled by boat from Libya. Of those arriving in Italy, Nigeria and Eritrea were the top two nationalities, being 21% and 11% respectively. The majority of new arrivals are people in need of international protection and are also victims of human trafficking and migrants seeking better quality of life.
A striking feature of the new arrivals is the increasing number of unaccompanied and separated children who have made the dangerous journeys, with more than 25,000 doing so in 2016. This is more than twice the number of unaccompanied and separated children than previous years. Unaccompanied and separated children represent 14% of all new arrivals in Italy.
Their perilous plight is not ended once they reach Europe. Deeply traumatised by the experiences during their journey towards Europe, separated from family, alone and without a European language in many cases, these children are extremely vulnerable to criminal gangs, traffickers and smugglers who await opportunities to take advantage of their obvious vulnerability. 
RENATE is undertaking a Mapping exercise on Child Trafficking in a selected number of European countries with the assistance of its Members in those countries. It is intended that the findings of such an exercise, which will be largely informed by members at grassroots level, will assist in guiding RENATE’s work in early intervention and support, so as to prevent human trafficking and exploitation.  
To access the fullUNHCR Rseport, please go to:
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.

UN Gif Box Campaign in Ireland


The UN GiftBox Campaign has commenced its tour of ten towns and cities in Ireland for the entire month of March, 2017.  The project is a joint initiative between APT Ireland (Act to Prevent Trafficking), the Loreto Congregation in Ireland and the Irish Department of justice. For all the updates and news, please follow on FaceBook and on Twitter   @GIFTBox_Ireland
Anne Kelleher, 2nd March, 2017.