CADECOM – Caritas Malawi

Caritas MalawiCaritas Malawi was established in 1984. During 1999, it was renamed CADECOM (Catholic Development Commission in Malawi) to change its image from a relief organisation to a development organisation.

CADECOM Mission Statement is ‘to create awareness and empower disadvantaged men, women and the youth to undertake development which is integral, gender and environmentally sensitive, sustainable and which promotes justice, human dignity, and self reliance with the active participation of the people themselves so that they take up the responsibility of their own destiny’.

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To achieve its mission, CADECOM implements programmes in the following thematic areas:

  • Agriculture, nutrition and food security
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene
  • Capacity building/training for transformation
  • Disaster risk reduction
  • Disaster preparedness, relief and rehabilitation
  • Mainstreaming of HIV/AIDS and gender in all projects
  • Natural resource management
  • Access to markets and income generating activities
  • Youth development and economic empowerment
  • Climate change adaptation and mitigation
  • Lobbying and advocacy

Its activities are in line with several national and international policy documents and agreements including, but not limited to: Millennium Development Goals, Malawi Growth and Development Strategy II (MGDS II), Malawi’s National Food and Nutrition Security Policy, National Adaptation Programs of Action as well as national and international gender and human rights documents.

There are eight Catholic dioceses in the country. Each diocese has a minimum of 10 staff members working on different donor funded projects and for every community, each project has a minimum of 20 volunteers.

The CADECOM relief and emergence and recovery program has been supported by several Caritas members, such as Caritas Australia, Cordaid, SCIAF, Trócaire, CRS, Caritas Sweden, Caritas Japan, Caritas Taiwan, Caritas Italy, Caritas Korea, Caritas Belgium, CAFOD and OXFAM.

Malawi is one of the poorest countries worldwide and faces immense challenges such as extreme poverty, disease, and a lack of critical resources. A variety of other social and environmental impacts such as hunger, orphaned children, scarce education opportunities (especially for girls), air pollution, prolonged dry spells, flooding and HIV/AIDS are also barriers to improved livelihoods.