Caritas Tajikistan is the national Catholic Church’s fledgling social-service agency that focuses its efforts on children in need, families, and the sick in this former Soviet republic. With a Catholic community numbering about 2,000, most of the aid to support the Church’s charitable efforts is procured from abroad.
“Our aim is to make a modest contribution to the social and moral rebuilding of this splendid country,” said Father Juan Carlos Sack, director of Caritas Tajikstan.
In conjunction with other Caritas organisations, Caritas Tajikistan provides humanitarian relief to the poor and marginalized following emergency crises. When catastrophic floods and mudslides struck in 2010, destroying communication lines, bridges and over 2,000 homes leaving hundreds homeless, Caritas Tajikistan and Caritas agencies intervened to provide families food, cookware and fuel for stoves, blankets and pillows, mattresses and hygiene items.
In addition, Caritas Tajikistan co-operated with Care International and Catholic Relief Services USA to provide winter assistance to the elderly, disabled and single mothers to survive the harsh, long Tajikistan winters. The provisions included clothing, sacks of flour, grains, pasta and cooking oil, along with thermos, hot-water bottles and candles.
Complementing Caritas Tajikistan emergency aid are long-term sustainable developmental programmes that provide sanitation facilitates and water access to urban poor communities in Dushanbe, community education workshops and adult skills training in remote rural areas.
Caritas Tajikistan medical assistance programmes help children afflicted with illness, such as cancer and congenital abnormality and play a vital role providing medical equipment to children’s hospitals. Moreover, Caritas Italy and various government offices provided funding to open a medical dispensary to serve 30,000 people in a poor district.
Caritas Tajikistan national office is located in Dushanbe and has a staff of 9 employees and 1 volunteer.
Caritas Tajikistan is affiliated with Caritas Internationalis and Caritas Asia and receives support from the global Caritas network; such as Catholic Relief Services USA, Caritas Italy and Caritas Switzerland. Caritas Switzerland assistance facilitates acquisition of new project funding to develop and implement regional strategies and projects.