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ARC Home > Projects > Faiths for Green Africa :
Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe

ARC's faith partners in Zimbabwe

ARC is working with two faith groups in Zimbabwe who have developed long-term environmental action plans and were among 26 Christian, Muslim and Hindu faith groups in sub-Saharan Africa that launched long-term environmental action plans at ARC's Many Heavens, One Earth, Our Continent Celebration in Nairobi, Kenya, in September 2012. They are the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa, and the United Church of Christ in Zimbabwe.



Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa

The Greek Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa is second in rank among all Orthodox Patriarchates and operates in 53 countries. It has 10 million Orthodox believers in Africa and around 1,000 clerics in some 5,000 parishes and small mission centres. There are eight seminaries in Alexandria, Nairobi, Kinsasa, Mwantza, Lagos, Yaunde, Kampala and Johannesburg. The Greek Patriarchate also produces several publications and runs schools, orphanages, nursery schools, clinics, old age homes and shelters for the poor.

Long-term Commitment for a Living Planet

The Patriarchate presented a seven-year plan to the ARC Windsor Celebration in 2009. Since then, some financial assistance has been provided to rural areas to get clean water for schools and local Orthodox communities in Tanzania, Uganda, Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana and Zimbabwe. Competitions on the environment have also been launched in some of the Church’s educational institutions.

ARC sponsored a seminar in July 2012 in Harare, Zimbabwe, to train young people from the Greek Orthodox Church about care of the environment.

Agreed future activities will include:

  • Setting up Environmental Awakeniing Centres in all parishes
  • All churches to keep September 1st each year as a day dedicated to the environment
  • Initiating new programmes of Christian environmental education for use in public and church-run schools
  • Every diocese to look at use of land and buildings and carry out energy saving programmes

    To read a summary of the plan, click here.

    To read the plan, click
    here.



    United Church of Christ in Zimbabwe

    The United Church of Christ in Zimbabwe (UCCZ) was established by missionaries from America in 1893. Now it is a local Church with more than 100 places of worship countrywide and an estimated membership of around 300,000 members. Women make up two thirds of its membership. The UCCZ has 20 institutions of learning, from primary to high schools, and two tertiary colleges – one of which is an agriculture college. It has four health delivery services with hospitals and clinic services. The Church has been involved in agriculture since the early 1900s, with communities benefiting from the development of underground water supplies and income-generating projects.

    Long-term Commitment for a Living Planet

    Land reform in Zimbabwe has caused extensive deforestation with the cutting down of trees and burning to clear land for farming. Severe flooding in the last decade has also increased environmental degradation. As a result, tree planting will be a major focus of the Church’s long-term plan.

    Agreed future activities will include:

  • Purchasing one million trees to be planted through all UCCZ sites and by church members
  • Organising workshops and conferences to educate communities and their leaders about the impact of tree cutting
  • Translate the Regional Climate Change Programme into local languages
  • Establish 20 hectares of land per ward as a reservoir of firewood

    To read a summary of the plan, click
    here.

    To read the plan, click
    here.


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    Related information

    September 5, 2012:
    PRESS RELEASE: Major ARC celebration planned for Nairobi this month to launch 26 Africa faith commitments
    ARC will hold a major celebration in Nairobi, Kenya, later this month to launch 26 eco commitments by Christian, Muslim and Hindu traditions. It is, we believe, the biggest civil society movement on climate change the Continent has seen.
    ARC Africa Faiths Newsletters
    Newsletter that links Christian, Muslim and Hindu faith groups in sub-Saharan Africa developing long-term action plans on the environment.
    April 12, 2012:
    Competition for African faith schools and youth groups
    ARC has launched a competition celebrating God's creation and caring for Mother Earth for children in faith schools and youth groups run by our faith partners in sub-Saharan Africa.