Caroline Cox is the founder of Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART).
Well I founded HART to fill a couple of gaps. People suffering oppression and persecution are often victims of pretty ruthless governments who don’t allow access by major aid organisations to those victims. And if the big boys like the UN don’t have permission to visit the victims, then they don’t go. So the victims are left unreached, unhelped, unheard. So we at HART spend a lot of our time crossing borders illegally and completely shamelessly to be with those victims, and to be a voice for them, to provide advocacy, but also to work through local partners to provide aid.
So we do reach the parts others don’t reach. But also, we try and go with the media, because the media tend to hunt in a pack. One day you’ll hear about Nigeria, you’ll hear about Boko Haram, then of course it’s Syria and ISIS, and you forget about Nigeria. So we try to keep people in frame, in focus, for the international community not to forget them.
In HART we are based on Christian values. We do have a cross in our logo, and our mandate really is to try to fulfil the biblical mandate to heal the sick, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, speak for the oppressed. But to note that that is unconditional, it doesn’t just say the Christian hungry, the Christian oppressed. We try to help all with aid and advocacy, regardless of their faith tradition or none. And we don’t proselytise, we respect their rights to their own faith. So we try to be available for all with unconditional love.