Release Date

April 07, 2010

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Catholic Relief Services,, Increases Commitment to Help Sudan Build A Peaceful Future

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) announced today $1.5 million in private funding and an appeal for an additional $2.5 million to help Sudan build a peaceful and prosperous future.

"This is a time of great opportunity and great danger for Sudan and for all of East Africa," says Sean Callahan, CRS' Executive Vice President of Overseas Operations. "All of us must work to ensure that Sudan's national elections this month and the vote by southerners in January 2011 on unity or independence proceed peacefully. Now is the time to nurture peace in this region and for these people who have seen so much war and suffering. CRS is committed to promoting peace."

In addition to CRS' widespread humanitarian activities in Sudan, as part of the agency's Sudan peace initiative CRS will expand its efforts to help Sudanese mitigate conflicts in non-violent ways. The agency will also work closely with key parties—including the U.S. and Sudan governments, the Catholic Church, other local partners, local government officials, community leaders and the international community—to promote full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and peaceful resolution of the ongoing conflict in Darfur. A key initial activity was CRS' financing of a forum last month in Sudan that brought together more than 60 Christian church leaders to unify their voice and vision for promoting peace in the country.

"There is no time to waste," Callahan adds. "Catholics worldwide, the U.S. government, and all who care about the Sudanese people must join together to build a sustainable peace before the ceasefire ends."

CRS has been working in Sudan since the end of the first major civil war in 1972. One of the largest nongovernmental humanitarian agencies working in the country, CRS' relief and development projects serve more than 1 million people across Sudan.

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Catholic Relief Services is the international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. The agency provides assistance to people in more than 100 countries and territories based on need, regardless of race, nationality or creed. For more information, please visit www.crs.org or www.crsespanol.org.