After its initiation in the fall of 2016, the first impact-driven project Right Now! decided to support was the Laudato Si’ Challenge. Inspired by Pope Francis’ eponymous encyclical, the idea behind the Challenge was to launch startups that are developing sustainable ways to solve the global climate crisis by 2030. ‘The Laudato Si’ Challenge is all about striving to build a future that includes everyone, everywhere,’ is how its CEO, Eric Harr, describes the ambition of the Challenge. ‘And thanks to Right Now! and the guidance from Paul van Engen, we have the opportunity to make that dream a reality.’
For 2018, the Challenge has set an equally ambitious goal: sustainably improve the lives of 10 million victims of forced displacement by 2020. And once again, Right Now! wholeheartedly supports this endeavor. Some of the reasons the issue of forced displacement is on top of the agenda for the Challenge this year are obvious: at present, an unprecedented 68,5 million people around the world have been forced from home. Among them are nearly 25,4 million refugees, over half of whom are under the age of 18.
‘The more I learn – and I have much more to learn – the more I have come to believe that, while this is a breakdown in economics and environment, it’s also a breakdown of our human family,’ Eric Harr says. ‘We’re not taking the time to talk with one another and to get to know one another. If we did, I believe we’d see that these people are not so different from us. They want what we all want: peace, opportunity, education for our children, dignified work.’
For more information on the Laudato Si’ Challenge, go to www.lsc18.org.