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A Church of the Caterham Team Ministry: Caterham Deanery - Diocese of Southwark - Church of England
Annual Report – Caterham Overseas Aid Trust
Registered Charity No. 283579

Caterham Overseas Aid Trust (COAT) is an ecumenical local charity with volunteers from St Mary’s, St John’s, the URC and the Sacred Heart churches working together with members of the local community to raise money to support carefully selected projects in the developing world. We finance simple, down-to-earth aid projects which are aimed at improving quality of life and use the maximum community self-help. We aim for our projects to become locally sustainable and we work through recognised non-governmental organisations (NGOs). We aim to donate £3,000 annually to each of our four main charities: Water Aid, Self Help Africa, VSO and Practical Action.

This is my opportunity to thank you all for your continued interest in and support of COAT. Thank you to Revd Canon Trevor Mapstone for being one of our Patrons and for allowing our Christmas Appeal to happen and thank you to all those who gave so generously.

One of the strengths of COAT I believe is the four churches – St. Mary’s, St. John’s, the URC and the Sacred Heart – working together across different denominations. Putting our faith into action to help those in the greatest need.


We have just received a receipt from Water Aid with a story of a lady in Burkina Faso who has had a toilet built at her home. Can you even begin to imagine what life was like for her and her family before this? This is one of 25,000 latrines built by Water Aid for vulnerable households in that country.


Planting for Progress in Zimbabwe: Fourteen community gardens have been established in the districts of Gwanda and Bulihima. They are equipped with boreholes, solar powered irrigation water pumps and drip irrigation kits to increase productivity through all year round farming, plus teaching in finance, literacy, marketing and aggro ecology skills.


COAT is supporting Cashew Orchard Farming in Burkina Faso for another year. 2790 women are involved in 37 different cashew producing co-operatives making and selling cashew butter, roasted/spiced cashews and cashew honey. This is alongside the bee keeping and normal honey production which help fertilise the cashew plants.

We/YOU have been part of all this! Thank you.

COAT has reached a very serious crossroads. I have to retire as Chairman. I have been on the Committee since 1981 and been Chairman for about 27 years. Now I am feeling the strain and need a break. Also, we have been lucky to have the best possible Treasurer in Barbara Whiteford for about 20 years. She too needs to step back a little though she is still happy to be on the Committee and represent St. Mary’s. We are moving into a new era of technology and need younger people. Please think seriously whether you feel you could join the Committee and help. Do speak to Barbara or myself if you would like to know more.

Margaret Deards

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