Exploring an Exciting New Partnership-Cardinal Peter K.A. Turkson and the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development
By SCI Vice President Ruth Holton-Hodson
A key component of SCI’s advocacy strategy is building partnerships with influential groups and persons to both amplify our message and strengthen our impact. The more people and groups around the world advocating for solar cookers, the more likely policymakers and opinion leaders will pay attention and take action.
At the suggestion of longtime SCI supporter and Legacy Circle Member Mary Frank, SCI contacted Cardinal Peter Turkson who is one of the principal authors of Pope Francis’ Encyclical Letter Laudato Si which articulates among other things the Pope’s concern about environmental degradation and global warming. The Pope appointed Cardinal Turkson, the first Ghanaian Cardinal, to be first Prefect of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development, which began operations on 1 January 2017. The areas covered by the new Dicastery include environment, ecology, ethics, dignity of all people, poverty, and economics. A Dicastery is a department of the Roman Curia, through which the Pope directs the Roman Catholic Church. Of course, SCI jumped on the suggestion and the opportunity to build a relationship with such a key figure and office within an influential organization. We sent the Cardinal a letter and information about SCI emphasizing how our concerns and missions aligned.
In April, we received an exciting response. The Cardinal wrote that the Dicastery is promoting a new partnership to work on inclusive and sustainable growth systems to promote Integral and Human Development and to contribute to the fulfillment of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s). Solar Cookers meet all 17 of the SDG’s. “This partnership will allow for a new form of collaboration with companies and other representatives of different sectors that share our common values and goals.” He states that he will have his team reach out to us in the near future to see how we might collaborate and he, “looks forward to having an opportunity of joining efforts…and you can count on the Dicastery’s support for an ambitious outcome to promote human dignity, also through cooking systems.” We’re very excited about pursing this new opportunity.
Thank you for your support of SCI that enables us to pursue influential collaborations such as this.
Photo credit: Christopher Czermak