Expanding the Catholic Church's Commitment to the Ebola Emergency Response: a special initiative and funding

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San Calisto, March 2015

Dear Representative of Religious Congregations and Catholic-Inspired Organizations engaged in the Catholic Church Response to Ebola Virus Disease:

It is with ongoing concern about the deep impact of Ebola Virus Disease on the people of coastal West Africa that I write to inform you a special initiative launched by the Holy See and entitled:

Expanding the Catholic Church’s Commitment to the Ebola Emergency Response.

Our Holy Father Pope Francis has called for solidarity with those affected on many occasions, including, most recently, during his 2015 address to the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See. He decried the present “throwaway culture” that is predominant in many parts of the world
and said, “I think in the first place of the way the sick are treated; often they are cast aside and marginalized like the lepers in the Gospel. Among the lepers of our own day we can count the victims of the new and terrible outbreak of Ebola which, especially in Liberia, Sierra Leone and
Guinea, has already taken over six thousand lives. Today I wish publicly to praise and thank those healthcare workers who, alongside men and women religious and volunteers, are caring in every way possible for the sick and their families, especially orphaned children. At the same time I
renew my appeal to the entire international community to provide adequate humanitarian assistance to patients and to make concerted efforts to combat the disease.”

In order to offer tangible witness to its prioritization of the Ebola Response, the Holy See has granted 500 000 Euro to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, with a specific mandate from Pope Francis to advance the above-mentioned initiative. I have attached a full description of the activities for which the Initiative will offer funding as well as an application form. We presently are seeking additional donors to the initiative. For the present first funding round, however, please be aware that funds are limited. Thus we ask you to keep the amounts requested to a maximum of 30 000 Euros with any requests for additional funding, should such funds become available, limited to an overall total maximum of 50 000 Euros. For larger projects, please
secure matching funds in advance and indicate, in your application, the sources and amounts of such matching funds. An application package is available on our website for immediate download and please note that all applications are received and reviewed by a committee of five people, four of which are from outside the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, to advise on which requests best align with the purpose and objectives of this expanded commitment.

With continuing prayers for those directly or indirectly affected by this epidemic, I remain,

Yours sincerely,
Cardinal Peter K.A. Turkson



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