For more than fifty years, PWRDF has been the mechanism by which Anglicans in Canada engage in development and relief work around the world. Canadian Anglicans have been fantastic supporters of that work throughout our long history, for which PWRDF is deeply grateful.
One thing PWRDF is working to do more is to build connections between Anglicans at home and our partners around the world. Many Anglican churches already have relationships with churches in other places—sometimes through a clergy connection, a young person who visited on a volunteer trip, or some other form of contact. PWRDF is looking to be a bigger part of connecting Anglicans in Canada and our work around the world.
PWRDF’s work at improving our Connections is taking a big step forward as we welcome Carolyn Vanderlip as PWRDF’s new Coordinator, PWRDF Connections Program Development. Carolyn comes to the position with a wealth and variety of history with PWRDF. She has been a member of the refugee network for more than 10 years as the refugee sponsorship coordinator for the diocese of Niagara. She was part of a PWRDF delegation to India and Sri Lanka in 2003. She has worked with PWRDF twice in the past, most recently as the 50th Anniversary Program Coordinator. Finally, she was part of a second delegation to India and Sri Lanka this year.
When asked why the connections work is so important to PWRDF, Carolyn replied, “On a PWRDF delegation visit to a refugee camp in Southern India this past March, I was approached by a woman who thanked me for coming back. She remembered that I had been there in 2003 and recognized me some nine years later. The connection with PWRDF was important to her: important enough to remember a visit almost a decade ago, and important enough for her to want to express her appreciation, language barrier notwithstanding. For me it was equally important. By gaining a deeper understanding of the challenges refugees face and the hopes and dreams they carry, and by carrying those stories back to Canada and advocating for the rights of refugees around the world, she and I will remain connected.”