A $7.3 billion pledge, including $5 billion from the Group of Eight countries, is not enough to stop millions of needless deaths among pregnant women and young children and is not enough for the G-8 leaders to say they've lived up to their responsibilities, representatives of Catholic aid groups said.
"We're disappointed with the G-8 leaders," said Michael Casey, executive director of the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace, after the June 26-27 G-8 meeting in Huntsville, Ontario.
"It's kind of a failure," said Alexis Anagnan of the French Catholic aid agency World Solidarity.
As partners with Caritas Internationalis, the Catholic Church's umbrella humanitarian and development agency, both organizations pushed the G-8 leaders to boost their commitment to women's and children's health concerns under the Muskoka Initiative.
The development groups also urged the related Group of 20 economic summit in Toronto June 27-28 to ramp up efforts to reduce extreme poverty worldwide by 2015 as outlined in the Millennium Development Goals established by the United Nations.