09/28/2017, 18.18
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Caritas Bangladesh joins 'Share the journey' campaign for refugees and migrants

by Sumon Corraya

The campaign, which was launched yesterday by Pope Francis, is promoted by Caritas Internationalis. It will involve all of the charity’s branches, which will ‘Share the journey" of all migrants, domestic or foreign, who seek a better future abroad.

Dhaka (AsiaNews) – Caritas Bangladesh has joined the ‘Share the journey‘ campaign, promoted by Caritas Internationalis and officially launched by Pope Francis at the General Audience in St Peter's Square.

The Catholic charity, which made the announcement at the same time as the campaign was presented in the Vatican, reiterated its commitment to refugees and migrants in a country that is currently facing an migrant crisis following the arrival of Muslim Rohingya from Myanmar.

"We are all migrants in the sense that we have been sent by our Heavenly Father to this earth. We cannot be united with migrant people until we realise the truth," said Dhaka Auxiliary Bishop Francis Shorot Gomes.

Caritas Bangladesh plans to involve all its central and regional offices. “The aim of our campaign is to promote the culture of encounter in communities where migrants and refugees leave and return to, where they travel through, and where they choose to make their homes,” said Caritas Internationalis on its website.

Hundreds of Caritas volunteers and several migrant workers were present at the launch.

The auxiliary bishop of Dhaka, who is also a member of the Caritas general body, said that Pope Francis reminded us “to unite to welcome, to protect, to promote and to integrate people obliged to leave their home and seek a new one among us."

Some people who went abroad for work spoke at the meeting, describing the hardships they encountered in the countries where they sought to build a better future for themselves and their families.

This was the case for Badol Roy, a Hindu. “I went abroad for a good job. I did not find any, and I was persecuted,” he explained. “I went to Libya for a job, but I was cheated by the recruitment agency. I spent days and weeks of misery. I did not get food or water, and I became sick. Later I went home.”

Caritas is not involved only with migrants from Bangladesh, but also with domestic migrants who abandon rural villages and try their luck in cities.

Like Monoura Begum is one of them. She said she came “to Dhaka with my children, but no one wanted to hire me as a domestic worker. I faced problems finding an accommodation and safety for them.”

She added that something should be done for migrant workers so that they can be helped.

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