Bradford on Avon oxfam group members enjoy busy summer

DURING the summer months Bradford on Avon Oxfam Group have continued fund raising and campaigning particularly on our concerns about Yemen and Climate Change. On 5th June Martin Butcher, who is Policy Advisor on Arms and Conflict for Oxfam, spoke at the United Church on “Yemen – Arms Sales and the World’s Worst Humanitarian Disaster”. Martin said that even before the present war Yemen was one of the poorest countries on earth and the war was having a devastating effect on its people. Britain signed the Arms Trade Treaty in 2013 which stated that arms should not be sold to countries which had poor human rights. However Martin saw the continued export of arms by Britain to Saudi Arabia was a big part of the problem. A collection at the meeting raised over £100 which was sent to Oxfam for their relief work in Yemen. Despite the fact the Court of Appeal has now found that the Government acted unlawfully in licensing arms sales to Saudi Arabia, after initially accepting the ruling, the Government is now contesting it and is taking the case to the Supreme Court. Before the new Prime Minister took over there had been some progress made by the former Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt in trying to get peace talks moving but little seems to be happening now and the group will be chasing this up. Calling for a ceasefire is urgently needed. We have been in touch with our MP Michelle Donelan over this issue.

On 26th June 12 people who were members or supporters of Oxfam, Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon, Christian Aid and Bradford on Avon Fairtrade Group (several wearing more than one hat!) took the train to London for ‘THE TIME IS NOW’ lobby on Climate Change. At the Abbey Centre they received briefings on the issues to take to our MPs and heard an inspirational talk from the new young CEO of Oxfam Danny Siskandarah who comes from Sri Lanka. After some waiting around on Lambeth Bridge the group were able to discuss the urgency of the Climate Crisis with our MP Michelle Donelan. One of our group members attended a special day on 29th August at Oxfam House in Oxford on the Climate Crisis and will be reporting back to the group at our next meeting on 7th September at 10.15 am at the Swan Hotel.

On Saturday 6th July we had a stall inside Holy Trinity Church at their Street Market where we demonstrated the Oxfam Lifesaver Cube. Dirty water is put in the cube and the user pumps it through the cube where it comes out clean! A wonderful help to people in situations such as floods. We will be having our annual street collection on 12th October and on 16th November we will be holding our very popular Oxfam Quiz at the Scout Hut.

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