Presbyterian appeal to aid impoverished African states
The Presbyterian Church's annual Christmas appeal is aiming to help people in two of Africa's poorest nations build a better future.
This year's World Development Appeal is focusing on the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Zimbabwe.
Rev Dr Katherine Meyer, convenor of the Church's world development committee, said: "The 2017 appeal will highlight our partners who are working in the difficult and dangerous context of the Congo, where they are addressing issues of gender injustice as an important foundation for the peace building and community development initiatives which are needed at every level of their troubled and fragile society.
"One of these partners is Action Entraide, whose work enables those who have been most deeply scarred by poverty and violence to take new initiatives.
"It also helps them to participate fully in the building of a new and more safe and stable society."
The DRC is one of the world's poorest and most fragile nations, and the theme of the appeal is 'A Beautiful Idea: Women's Voices In Fragile States'.
Another project being supported by the 2017 appeal is co-operation with Padare Enkundleni, a faith-based men's forum for gender issues.
Zimbabwe is now coming to terms with the end of the 37-year rule of Robert Mugabe, and all funds from the West will go a long way to help the poor of the economically devastated country.
Last year the annual Presbyterian appeal raised nearly £545,000.