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Oblates at the 2011 World Social Forum in Senegal

January 26th, 2011

Fr. Walter Butor OMI, Ms Patti Radle and Fr. Jose Ponce OMI will represent the U.S. Oblate JPIC Committee at the upcoming 2011 World Social Forum (WSF) in Dakar, Senegal which will run from February 6 to 11. The three will join other Oblates from around the world who will be attending the Forum.

The World Social Forum is an annual summit held by non-governmental organizations, civil society members and religious leaders who believe that “another world is possible”. Participants meet to coordinate global campaigns and share organizing strategies in panels and workshops through which participants will exchange experiences, best practices and networking action. The World Social Forum meets at the beginning of each year to offer an alternative platform to the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland.

Oblate JPIC General Service Director Fr. Camille Piche OMI will be hosting an informal inaugural gathering for Oblate participants to share expectations. At the end of the Forum, the group will gather again to discuss their experiences and reflections. Oblates participate in the World Social Forum to express solidarity with the thousands of participants meeting to share concerns and ideas on how to best respond to issues of globalization, trafficking of women and children, ecological sustainability, trade relations of nations, extractive industries and more.

For Oblates participants, this is a forum to share their own experiences from their different areas and sites of ministry. It also serves as a way to learn from what other people and organizations are doing and how they are responding to global issues. Some Oblates will arrive early in Senegal to attend pre-WSF meetings, such as the 2011 World Forum on Theology and Liberation, the World Assembly of Migrants and the World Social Forum on Health and Social Security.

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