Celebrating our Volunteers

CAFOD volunteer, Paul Wyre, shares with us about his volunteering with CAFOD in Lancaster Diocese as both Area Coordinator (Lancaster Deanery) and  Office Volunteer.

Paul with his wife, Lynne, and Fr Peter Sayer at St Bernadette's Catholic Church in Lancaster

Paul with his wife, Lynne, and Fr Peter Sayer at St Bernadette’s Catholic Church in Lancaster

I was attracted to volunteer with CAFOD because I would be able to make a difference. I’ve been involved with local and national campaigns which have highlighted global issues which affect local communities.

My favourite volunteering moment over the last year is when I helped organise the CAFOD Lancaster Memorial Mass in my own parish of St Bernadette’s. A lady travelled to the Mass from a fair distance away to join us in praying and remembering a recently deceased family member, a CAFOD supporter. Just seeing and hearing how special it was to her that time had been taken to remember and thank deceased CAFOD supporters, was so special.

Paul at the CAFOD Lancaster Volunteer Centre

Paul at the CAFOD Lancaster Volunteer Centre in Preston

I would recommend volunteering not just as a means to help the less fortunate but also as a means of meeting like-minded people who we would never have got to meet and know otherwise. I have made friends at a stage in life I did not think I would.

My time volunteering with CAFOD is an experience which will always be a very close part of my life.

 

Looking for new volunteer opportunities? See how you can volunteer with us

 

 

 

 

Preston school concert and bush tucker trial raises nearly £1,200 for CAFOD

A huge thank you to pupils and staff at Corpus Christi Catholic High School in Preston. They raised over £1,000 for CAFOD’s Lent appeal.

'Stars in Their Eyes' show

‘Stars in Their Eyes’ show

During Lent, the school had been holding various fundraising activities and the finale was a ‘Stars in their Eyes’ performance by pupils, alongside and a bush tucker trial undertaken by the teachers.

The now annual ‘Stars in their Eyes’ performance returned to the school stage with eight ‘Stars’ taking to the stage and three supporting performances from staff.

Highlights from the event, organised by Miss Gardner, included the Year 11 group ‘Bus Stop Boys’ performing Uptown Funk to the 320-pupil audience and year 8 pupil Taylor Stout with her winning performance of ‘Titanium’.

I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here - Bush Tucker Teacher Trials

I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here – Bush Tucker Teacher Trials

Another popular event was ‘I’m a Teacher Get Me Out of Here – Bush Tucker Trial’, organised by Mrs Hartley and hosted by Mr Botes with Year 11 volunteers acting as waiters. The popular show was very entertaining with several brave staff enduring some extraordinary culinary delights, including grasshoppers, pigs’ tails, bugs, eyes and worms. The winner was Mr Holden, who managed to eat everything.

A representative from the school said: “We would like to say a huge thank you and show our appreciation to the contestants, victims or fools who willingly, some more so than others, put themselves through that torture for a good cause!

“Without their willingness to put themselves through those hideously delicious delicacies, we wouldn’t have been able to do it.”

Headteacher Mr Hubbard, School Chaplain Mr Griffin, and Corpus Christi pupils, present the cheque to CAFOD

Headteacher Mr Hubbard, School Chaplain Mr Griffin, and Corpus Christi pupils, present the cheque to CAFOD

Both events successfully raised over £696, making the total for the school’s Lent fundraising £1,192.

This Lent, CAFOD has been working with communities in the South African country of Zambia. It is estimated that over half of Zambians live below the poverty line. CAFOD’s partners in Zambia provide training in fish farming, beekeeping and crop farming as well as helping individuals within communities develop business skills.

The money raised by Corpus Christi will mean that CAFOD’s partners will be able to continue to support projects around the world.

CAFOD’s representative in Preston, Patrick Gardner, said:

“We would like to say a big thank you to Corpus Christi pupils and staff for joining us in transforming communities this Lent. The events looked like so much fun and really do show that by coming together and adding up all the small things, we can make a massive difference.”

 

 

 

Celebrating our Volunteers

CAFOD campaigner and parish volunteer, Stephen Garsed, shares his volunteering story with us……

Stephen at a parish Live Simply evening

Stephen at a parish Live Simply evening

On arriving in Preston 25 years ago, I joined a parish with an active CAFOD group. I am also part of a CAFOD group at my church, Our Lady & St Edward’s in Preston, promoting the Live Simply Campaign in response to Laudato Si’.

Over the years I have learned that development is much more than ‘giving aid,’ it is about working in partnership with poor communities to meet their needs.

 

 

Stephen at the Climate Lobby with his MP

Stephen, and his wife Anne, at the Climate Lobby with his MP at the House of Parliament

This goes right to the heart of what it is to be a Christian, irrespective of  denomination. With my wife, Anne, a Methodist, and other members of the family, I have campaigned on issues such as: trade justice, the Jubilee Debt Campaign, climate change, and tax justice. The joint work of CAFOD and Christian Aid on these issues is something we support both together and individually.

We have lost count of the amount of campaign cards and letters we have written to our MP. The most memorable events have always been the big national rallies, particularly meeting our MP during the “For the Love of” campaign.

Stephen has recently taken on the role of  Campaign Volunteer Coordinator for CAFOD in Lancaster diocese.  A vital role in ensuring our campaigning impact and engagement is as high as possible at a local level. So you’ll be hearing more from Stephen in the coming months……..

Speak up on climate and energy this summer