Meet CAFOD Volunteer, Alastair Anderson

Office volunteers help us with the smooth running of the Volunteer Centre and support us with a variety of administrative tasks. Alastair Anderson started with us in the Volunteer Centre in December 2015 and has helped us with a rich variety of tasks, including keeping track of events and volunteers throughout the diocese and other important admin.

Alastair also acts as a parish volunteer throughout the four-church Parish of Guildford,Alastair Anderson supporting the volunteer in his own church but also covering the other three churches while we search for a volunteer there. In addition to volunteering in the parish and the office, Alastair is also Area Coordinator, helping us stay in touch with people across the Guildford Deanery.

Alastair volunteers because ‘CAFOD is an organisation working to help others and it gives me the opportunity to help others, to give back to others and to help our brothers and sisters the world over.

‘I also hope that the experience of office administration work that I’ve had at CAFOD will help me career-wise. I enjoy meeting a wide range of new people when volunteering in the Parish, as well as the banter and camaraderie when at the Volunteer Centre.

‘Contact with members of my Parish has given me greater confidence and I find great satisfaction in learning new office skills.

‘If you’re thinking about volunteering, I would say definitely give it a whirl. CAFOD is a continuously evolving and dynamic charity. We are all making a difference in the world – long term to help those affected by poverty. Come and join us.’

Our sincere thanks go to Alastair for his willingness, his time, his efforts and of course, his winning personality and good company.

If you are interested in volunteering please do get in touch – we are looking for all volunteer roles, but in particularly someone to help us with media and social media. There are also quite a few parishes without volunteers so if you’d be able to help us there that would be brilliant!

A Volunteer Week Thank-You from Geoff O’Donoghue

Our volunteers are key to our work in England and Wales, whether they are inspiring a group of primary school children or raising awareness in a parish, coordinating other volunteers or helping in the office. Our volunteers help our work in ways that can’t be underestimated.

Geoff O’Donoghue, our Director of Operations, has a word of thanks to say so here he is…

Naturally, we add our most sincere thanks from this office too.

If you are watching this and aren’t a volunteer, then please do get in touch if you are interested in joining our team.    01483 898 866

Holy Angels, Ash, receive the livesimply parish award

We are delighted that Holy Angels Parish in Ash are proud recipients of the second Livesimply Parish Award in our diocese.

On Sunday the 20th of May Maria-Elena Arana from CAFOD’s Campaign Team came to present the award at Mass on Sunday the 20th of May. After Mass the parish had a shared lunch celebration.

Maria-Elena said afterwards:

‘I really enjoyed my visit to Holy Angels Parish. I was so welcomed by everyone and it was a lovely mass and an excellent parish bring and share lunch. Fr Robin was so supportive. And it was wonderful meeting some of the livesimply/Justice and Peace team.

‘It was great to hear about how much the parish has done on issues like Fairtrade and supporting their local foodbank but also great to hear that the parish also supported CAFOD’s Power to be campaign.

Maria-Elena presenting the award to the livesimply team in Ash (Fr Robin in the background).

Maria-Elena (left) presenting the award to the livesimply team in Ash (Fr Robin in the background).

The livesimply award is an opportunity for Catholic communities – parishes, schools, religious orders and chaplaincies – to respond to Pope Francis’ invitation in Laudato Si’ to “work with generosity and tenderness in protecting this world which God has entrusted to us”.

It is awarded to communities who can show how they have been living:
• simply
• in solidarity with people in poverty
• sustainably with creation.

Mike Harte, parish volunteer who has been spear-heading the work, said that ‘Sunday was a wonderful day. Thanks so much to Maria-Elena – Parishioners really appreciated her encouraging message.’

Our thanks go to Mike, Helen, Mary and Eveleen and the Holy Angels Parish for their work on becoming a Fairtrade Parish. Thanks also to Rod Thick, our livesimply Parish Coordinator, for his support of parishes who are journeying towards the livesimply Parish Award. If you are interested in what it entails, do click on the link or get in touch with us in the CAFOD Volunteer Centre.

There are several parishes who are on the journey to becoming a livesimply parish. Who will be our diocesan number 3?