Talitha Kum - Announcement

Talitha Kum - Announcement

The President and Executive Board of the International Union of Superiors General announce a change in the leadership of Talitha Kum – the International Network of Religious Against Human Trafficking.

After almost eight years as International Coordinator of Talitha Kum, Sr. Gabriella Bottani, cms (Comboni Missionary Sisters), is concluding her mandate which is now being assumed by Sr. Abby Avelino mm (Maryknoll Sisters).


We would like to thank Sr. Gabriella for her exceptional leadership during these past years. Under her guidance the work of Talitha Kum and that of thousands of sisters, priests, brothers and lay collaborators has become widely known. Drawing on her anti-trafficking experience in Brazil and working with an international coordinating committee, Sr. Gabriella has worked to establish more than 70 networks of Talitha Kum worldwide. She and her dedicated staff have recently supported a very effective network of Youth Ambassadors in Asia. In addition, new continental hubs are currently being created to animate and support existing networks and to offer formation for the creation of new networks.

Talitha Kum’s Call to Action with its focus on care, heal, empower and restore sums up Sr. Gabriella’s mission focus during these past years. Whether speaking at international conferences, animating formation, opening exhibitions or meeting with survivors, the dignity of the human person and the Gospel call to reach out to those on the margins was central to Sr. Gabriella’s message. The Church’s World Day of Prayer and Action on the Feast of St. Bakhita, is an initiative developed under her leadership, which has linked people across the world in highlighting this human tragedy.


As she leaves this particular role, we know that she will continue to support the work of Talitha Kum in new and imaginative ways. We pray God’s blessing on Sr. Gabriella’s future endeavours and thank her for her years of dedicated service.



Sr. Gabriella’s very able successor is Sr. Abby Avelino from the Philippines who has recently spent some years in mission in Japan. There she animated the local Talitha Kum network and then took up the position of Talitha Kum Coordinator - Asia. In this role she was very effective in strengthening the networks in Asia and in establishing the network of youth ambassadors. As a member of the International Committee, she contributed to the growth of Talitha Kum worldwide and its many initiatives. For the past number of months, she has been based in Rome working alongside Sr. Gabriella and the Talitha Kum team. They will continue to work together until February 2023.
Recently the networks in Asia had a very successful meeting in Thailand led by Sr. Abby. We wish her every blessing for the years ahead and assure her of the support of the Executive and Staff of UISG.


Read the announcement


Dee Dungy

Congratulations Sr. Abby on your new appointment, I was on the MOGC. I would like to have a chance to speak with you about mobilizing youth and young adults internally displaced persons, IDPs in East Africa, on the difference between modern-day slavery and human trafficking. We intend to empower this already vulnerable group through awareness, prevention, intervention, (reconciliation within the community, and/or reform of laws that relate to and protect IDPs from human trafficking. Looking forward to speaking with you. Dee Dungy Maryknoll Missioner


Gisèle Turcot

Les changements au leadership sont une belle occasion de mettre en lumière la mission et les accomplissements de Talitha Kum. Grand merci à soeur Bottani pour avoir bâti un grand réseau d'entraide et de solidarité. Bienvenue à Sr. Avelino! Grâce à sa large expérience dans le continent asiatique, elle sera note conscience et elle nous guidera avec sagesse. Que Dieu lui donne toute l'énergie spirituelle pour remplir avec joie ce nouveau mandat.

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