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Churches offer roses to stop the violence

Red roses for Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey (left) swissinfo.ch

Swiss church charities have sold 100,000 roses across the country as part of their campaign to help victims of violence worldwide.

This content was published on March 12, 2005 - 15:53

Organisers said the funds worth SFr500,000 ($434,707) would go towards peace projects in South Africa, Haiti, Indonesia and Sudan.

Several thousand volunteers, including personalities from the world of Swiss politics and culture, took part in Saturday’s nationwide campaign by the Catholic Lenten Fund and the Protestant Bread for All charities.

The organisers hailed the highlight of this year’s pre-Easter fundraising activities in more than 300 Swiss towns and cities as a success.

Patrick Frei-Gisi of the Lenten Fund said the roses, which were sponsored by the country’s leading retailer, Migros, sold out within hours.

The money will be used for projects to promote social justice and understanding between different religions in South Africa, Haiti, Indonesia and Sudan.

Ecumenical effort

The ecumenical campaign was launched last Monday when the charities presented the foreign minister, Micheline Calmy-Rey, with a bunch of flowers.

This year’s joint campaign by the church charities is aimed at combating all forms of violence and discrimination across the world.

The churches have called on people in Switzerland to show their solidarity with the victims of armed conflicts and oppression.

A special campaign using text messages on mobile phones is being aimed at young Swiss.

swissinfo with agencies

In brief

The 100,000 roses were sold by the Catholic Lenten Fund and the Protestant Bread for All charities as part of their annual pre-Easter campaign.

The fundraising effort collected SFr500,000 which will go towards peace projects in South Africa, Indonesia, Haiti and Sudan.

The roses - with a Max Havelaar fair-trade label - were sponsored by the country’s leading retailer, Migros.

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