KAIROS Participates in Study Tour to Guatemala
From Nov 19-29, KAIROS network member Helen Knott and KAIROS staff person Rachel Warden will join in a study tour to Guatemala. Sponsored by the Mining the Connections Working Group of the Maritime Conference of the United Church of Canada, the tour will focus on the social, health, environmental and spiritual impacts of Canadian mining companies in Guatemala and neighbouring El Salvador.
The KAIROS representatives will travel extensively in Guatemala with United Church delegates from across Canada, many of whom are also part of the KAIROS network. They will meet with ecumenical and United Church partners, and hear first-hand from communities impacted by mining.
The tour is a rare opportunity to visit three Canadian-owned mine sites and to learn from partners about how communities respond to mining, the alternatives to mining, and their experiences with community consultations. We will examine how Canadian churches can respond to the situation through advocacy, educational opportunities and responsible investment strategies.
The study tour highlights the cross-cutting nature of KAIROS’ program: Partnerships – our partner, CEIBA, is hosting the delegation in Guatemala; Indigenous rights and FPIC– the experience of community consultations in Guatemala will inform our FPIC research; Corporate campaigning – the delegation will visit three mine sites; Human rights and impunity – in addition to the alarming human rights situation in Guatemala, there is also the possibility of a re-trial of former president and military leader Rios Montt for crimes against humanity and genocide.
It is an important time to be in Guatemala to accompany partners and to bear witness.
Please stay tuned to the KAIROS website for blogging – link to blog – and updates.