Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand supports overseas aid that makes the poor a priority and involves them in their own development. New Zealand needs to raise its overseas aid to 0.7 percent of our national income.
The superfluous wealth of rich countries should be placed at the service of poor nations. The rule which up to now held good for the benefit of those nearest to us, must today be applied to all the needy of this world.
- Pope Paul VI, Populorum Progressio, 1967
As a relatively well-off nation, New Zealand has a responsibility to help the development of poorer nations, and ensure that the goods of the earth are shared with all. This is in line with Catholic social teaching on how goods should be used, and protecting the poor.
For aid to be effective, it must ensure that the poorest and most vulnerable benefit. Those targeted to receive aid also need to be involved as active partners.
Caritas has long lobbied to get our official government aid up to 0.7 percent of Gross National Income - a target first set for developed countries in the 1970s, and reaffirmed through the Millennium Development Goals.
Write to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Prime Minister, and/or your local MP. Ask them to support real development that prioritises the poor and involves them in their future. Ask them to ensure New Zealand meets its commitment to raise its aid levels to 0.7% of Gross National Income by 2015. See our guidelines for writing letters.
Budget: Overseas aid shows flagging commitment - media release, 24 May 2011
Talk on Official Development Assistance for Global Day of Action on Military Spending, 17 April 2012, by Tara D'Sousa: