Botswana, France and Italy have joined the “13 Houses” Campaign with three very different projects. We are happy to have reached the benchmark of 50 countries with at least one “13 Houses” project, and even more to welcome France, the birthplace of the Vincentian Family and our founders.
Back in December the FHA launched the campaign “Embracing the homeless in a network of charity,” to take the “13 Houses” Campaign to the 160 countries with Vincentian presence. We are also challenging countries and branches that already have a project to bring more countries on board, taking Vincentian networks and connections to the next level. We are asking them to map their Vincentian connections with nearby countries and to act on them.
In France, the AIC, SSVP and the Congregation of the Mission have opened the “Accueil Louise & Rosalie” (Shelter Louise and Rosalie) near the CM Mother House. Named after Louise de Marillac and Rosalie Rendu, the shelter offers a welcoming place for women living on the streets, where they can escape from isolation and reconnect with society. Through the work of staff and volunteers, the Shelter Louise and Rosalie helps these women to start rebuilding their lives.
On the other side of the Alps, the Congregation of the Mission has partnered with other Vincentians and the local Caritas to open the project “Fratelli Tutti”, named after Pope Francis’s third encyclical. The Congregation has opened a fully furnished apartment in their Missionary House in Como to shelter sick homeless people. They let the people stay depending on their needs in an apartment with access to the facilities needed.
In Botswana, southern Africa, The Sisters of Charity of Nazareth (SCN) and other members of the Vincentian Family are working in the capital Gaborone to rebuild one house and refurbish several others. Another element of the project is to bolster access to water and sanitation for the beneficiaries. They are hoping to help up to 60 people to prevent homelessness and to improve their lives.
We are very close to reaching our original goal of changing the lives of up to 10,000 homeless people, but there are still more than 100 countries with Vincentian presence without a “13 Houses” project. Join us to end homelessness. One house at a time!