(Brussels/Soesterberg, 20 January 2011) At its annual meeting the CIDSE Board of Directors today elected Chris Bain as new President. For the next three years Mr. Bain will lead the joint advocacy and development cooperation efforts of the international alliance of Catholic development agencies.
Mr. Bain, Director of CAFOD, the Catholic aid agency for England and Wales, succeeds René Grotenhuis (Director of Cordaid, the Netherlands), whose three-year term as President has come to an end.
“Since its foundation over 40 years ago CIDSE always remained true to Pope Paul VI’s call to challenge global structural injustices in order to improve the situation of the world’s poor. Unfortunately, this is ever more urgent today,” said Chris Bain.
The lives of millions of poor people around the world are threatened by the impacts of the global climate, financial and food price crises. In 2010, violent natural disasters caused despair and destruction in, among others, Haiti and Pakistan.
“CIDSE will continue to urge world leaders to read the signs of the times and tackle the root causes of global injustices. As rich countries gather the pieces of their broken economies, we ask them to foster new models that generate a more sustainable pattern of growth, offering people in developing countries a fair chance to thrive,” Bain added.
The Board of Directors thanked Mr Grotenhuis for his firm guidance in politically stormy years caused by the financial, climate and food crises. Under his direction, important initiatives like the CIDSE-Caritas climate justice campaign developed, while issues like the need for new and additional finance and improved effectiveness of development cooperation were put firmly on both governmental and civil society agendas.
In 2011 CIDSE will continue to work with sister networks to shape the global policy agenda focusing on resources for development; climate change; food, agriculture and sustainable trade; and business and human rights. Decisions at international meetings such as the G8 and G20 in France and the UN climate summit in South Africa, need to aim at eradicating poverty and pursuing sustainable development for all.
“We are delighted to welcome Chris Bain as our new President," said Bernd Nilles, Secretary General of CIDSE. “His vast development and leadership experience and involvement in the management of CIDSE as member of our Executive Committee will be highly valuable to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of people living in poverty."
Roeland Scholtalbers, CIDSE Media and Communication Officer, +32(0)477068383, scholtalbers(at)cidse.org