2022 Assembly


From Ireland, RENATE members Eilis Coe, rsc and Mary Ryan, rsm, share news of the plans which APT Ireland (Act to Prevent Trafficking) to mark the International day of Awareness and Prayer against Human Trafficking, 8 February 2019.



APT have planned a national awareness-raising one-day conference to take place on 1 March, at the Atrium, Department of Justice and Equality and have secured Mr. Kevin Hyland, OBE, former UK anti-Slavery Commissioner as the key note speaker. Guest speakers on the day include Ms. Noelene Blackwell, CEO of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre; Ms. Sheila Crowley, services Manager at RUHAMA and JP O’ Sullivan, MECPATHS. A number of Transition Year students and their teachers will present on the teaching and learning about the topic of Human Trafficking, at Post-Primary school level.

A report on the event will be available post 1 March next.

Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications.

Feast Day 8 February 2019: International Day of Prayer and Awareness against human trafficking. “TOGETHER against human trafficking”.


On February 8, 2019 let’s turn on a light against the trafficking of persons, to celebrate the 5th edition of the International Day of Prayer and Awareness against human trafficking that this year will have as its theme: “TOGETHER against human trafficking”.

The first edition of the IDPT was celebrated on February 8, 2015, by the will of Pope Francis, who in 2014 entrusted the International Union of Superiors and Superiors General (UISG / USG) with promoting this day.
In these years, gathering in prayer has facilitated collaborating and overcoming the boundaries within which we operate, dedicated to our projects that, although very important, could lead us to cut ourselves off from the others. The great tragedy of trafficking urges us to overcome every barrier to join forces and collaborate for the common good.
On February 12th 2018, Pope Francis received a group of young people and representatives of the organizations sponsoring the International Day of Prayer. On this occasion he donated a very beautiful prayer that can be downloaded, into many different languages, from TALITHA KUM Website. Urged by the questions of the young participants, Pope Francis recalled how important it is to tackle the root causes of trafficking and wished “that all of you can send a message to leaders at every level of governments, business and society, to demand access to quality education and, consequently, fair and sustainable employment.”
This requires us to coordinate our actions and unite our strengths. “Together against human trafficking” is the invitation addressed to everyone, each according to their own possibilities.


Feast Day 8 February 

St Josephine Bakhita, also known as ‘Mother Moretta’ (our Black Mother) bore 144 physical scars throughout her life which were received after she was kidnapped at the age of nine and sold into slavery.

Born c. 1869 in Olgossa, Darfur, Sudan
Died 8 February 1947, Italy
Year of beatification 1992 (17 May)
Year of canonisation 2000 (1 October)

Such was the trauma experienced that she forgot her birth name and her kidnappers gave her the name Bakhita meaning ‘fortunate’. Flogging and maltreatment were part of her daily life. She experienced the moral and physical humiliations associated with slavery. It was only in 1882 that her suffering was alleviated after she was bought for the Italian Consul. This event was to transform her life. In this family and, subsequently in a second Italian home, she received from her masters, kindness, respect, peace and joy. Josephine came to discover love in a profound way even though at first she was unable to name its source. A change in her owner’s circumstances meant that she was entrusted to the Canossian Sisters of the Institute of the Catechumens in Venice. It was there that Bakhita came to know about God whom, ‘she had experienced in her heart without knowing who He was’ since she was a child. She was received into the Catholic Church in 1890, joining the sisters and making final profession in 1896. The next fifty years of her life were spent witnessing to God’s love through cooking, sewing, embroidery and attending to the door. When she was on door duty, she would gently lay her hands on the heads of the children who attended the nearby school and caress them. Her voice was pleasing to the little ones, comforting to the poor and suffering. She was a source of encouragement. Her constant smile won people’s hearts, as did her humility and simplicity. As she grew older she experienced long, painful years of sickness, but she continued to persevere in hope, constantly choosing the good. When visited and asked how she was, she’d respond: ‘As the Master desires’. During her last days she relived the painful days of her slavery and more than once begged: ‘Please, loosen the chains… they are heavy!’. Surrounded by the sisters, she died on 8 February 1947.

Awareness-raising and advocating for the survivors of Human Trafficking.


In early January 2019, Rome Reports ran a feature on the work of RENATE, entitled ‘’Human Trafficking: No law is really on the side of the victim.’’ The feature was screened nationally and internationally via the web, thereby raising awareness about Human Trafficking and ensuring informed action is taken to prevent and combat Human Trafficking.

The interview with Imelda Poole, IBVM, President RENATE Europe, is available at:

Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications.

Reflections by Kathryn Keigher, IBVM and Mary Agnes Idiong, IBVM, on the launch of the RENATE Child Trafficking Mapping Exercise.


PROVINCE  WEEKLY: Happy Mary Ward week! Celebrate and enjoy a woman who did much.

 Let us give thanks for the light those before us have been to their world and may we continue to be light for others and receive the gift of their light for us.

A Funny Thing happened on the way to the station . . .

This account begins and ends at the railway station. Setting out early on the morning of Mary Ward’s birthday I wandered into the newspaper cabin at Altrincham station. For a couple of minutes the newsagent and I engaged in an infinite deal of nothing about Brexit. Eventually I told him, sheepishly, that I was going to Westminster myself that morning. He asked me why I was going and I told him that I was going to a meeting. He asked me what the meeting was about and I said, ‘Anti-trafficking’… Please click for more.


Address by RENATE President, Imelda Poole, IBVM, at the reception at the UK Parliament on the occasion of the launch of the RENATE Child Mapping Exercise.


RENATE was launched in 2009 by a small group of Religious from across Europe, who fulfilled the task to constitute the Foundation in The Netherlands as a non-profit NGO, under the Umbrella of the International Organisation, Talitha Kum, a network of networks across the world of Religious and co-workers founded in Rome by the major Religious Superiors conference. As with all these other continental networks, RENATE constitutes a network of religious and co-workers from 31 European countries who all have the common mission of working against Human Trafficking.  It is a most extraordinary and huge body of women and men who have the enormous capacity to act fast and with compassion and loving care across borders, right across the world:

Working tirelessly to rehabilitate victims, free the world of labour exploitation, slavery and forced organ harvesting.

  • Addressing the root causes of systemic injustice that creates and sustains this vile trade in human lives.
  • Using its network to strengthen communication and co-operation between countries of origin, transit and destination.
  • Providing opportunities for the full reintegration of victims which can include protection in a safe home, acquisition of proper documents and training for meaningful work so that victims can regain and be enabled to live life to the full.
  • Educating society, particularly youth, to view all forms of human trafficking and exploitation as totally unacceptable.
  • Challenging judicial and civil authorities to adopt and enforce legislation that protects victims, provides them with adequate compensation, punishes clients and buyers and seizes the assets of perpetrators. Member of the European Parliament:
  • Collaborating with the media in efforts to bring a strong voice to the attention of the world denouncing all aspects of human trafficking and exploitation.

Every member is connected at grass roots with many other networks and partners which involve  local National Referral Mechanisms, governments, police, many other statutory and non- statutory services.

Story: a. Greece and rescue cross border from back of website via Italy, b. illegal agencies/passport/police company and labour trafficking of young Philipino in Albania,  c. Cardiff and 4 Albanian girls – linking with welsh anti trafficking groups, Kevin Hyland for advise all forming new partnerships and extending the networks from the North to the south of this country within one weekend, last weekend.

Communication is at the heart of the work but communication is only effective when the communication comes from a heart filled with compassion and love.  Listening with this understanding is a response in love. This leads to generative listening when we are listening with the desire to understand with such compassion that we can hear the story, the new insights being born.  This will lead to change of law, change of attitude to the crime and the victim. It will be based on a deeper commitment to justice leading to just action for the protection of the victim and just action dealt out to the perpetrators. We cannot deny the truth when we really hear it so it hurts.

Invite all Parliamentarians to stand, then all RENATE members to stand.  Invite them to listen to one another, invite the parliamentarians to listen to those working at the grass roots.

Imelda Poole, IBVM,  President RENATE Europe.