Sat 30th June, 10:30am: Volunteer Training (Speaking at Mass and Understanding CAFOD)

We warmly invite anyone interested in becoming a CAFOD volunteer to come along and join us at 10:30am Saturday 30th June at our Volunteer Training session including ‘Speaking at Mass’ training and ‘Understanding CAFOD’ awareness session

The volunteer training session will be held at our Volunteer Centre, located in the grounds of Hinsley Hall, 62 Headingley Lane, Leeds, LS6 2BX

You will meet other volunteers who have recently joined and find out more about the work of CAFOD. Even if you have been involved in your local CAFOD group, and would like to get more involved, we would love to see you.

CAFOD leeds at Otley event

Come along and find out how you can get involved in your local parish or school as a CAFOD volunteer


Book your place by sending your contact details to or call (0113) 275 9302 for more information

Please bring along your own lunch, hot drinks will be provided.


Zimbabwe CAFOD Officer visited Leeds Diocese

Livison Zimbabwe talk guests Entende NhlanHla Bronagh

Members of the Leeds Zimbabwe community come to meet Livison Chipatiso at CAFOD

On 21st February we hosted an inspirational talk and shared lunch with Zimbabwe Programme Officer, Livison Chipatiso. The Volunteer Centre was jam packed, we had the biggest gathering we have seen here in a long time. Several members of the Leeds Zimbabwe community came along to the event to welcome Livison to Leeds. We were also joined by schools volunteers, parish volunteers and area coordinators who all give their time up to support prayer, campaign and giving actions all across the Diocese of Leeds.

livison crowd at the Zimbabwe talk

Volunteers from Huddersfield, Skipton, Bradford, Halifax and Leeds all come to hear Livison speak about sustainable projects in Zimbabwe

Livison explained the need for more support for sustainable, affordable and renewable solutions to irrigate land and diversify crops in areas where climate variation causes extreme malnutrition. After a shared lunch, Livison then travelled to the School of Applied Global Ethics at Leeds Beckett University to address students and staff who are particularly interested to know more about sustainable development.

Livison Beckett Uni

Livison speaking to staff and students at Leeds Beckett University

Speaking at the event, CAFOD worker Bronagh Daly said “It is wonderful to have our colleague from Zimbabwe here amongst us. We feel very close to the families and communities from hearing Livison’s words. We are inspired by Livison’s talk and it really has brought us all together as a team, all keen to do as much as we can to support the projects that are making a huge impact on the lives of Svondo and his family and many others like him”


To find out more about our work in Zimbabwe, click here

Sophie is back from El Salvador

We are delighted to welcome our Step into the Gap volunteer Sophie Aulton, back to the Leeds Volunteer Centre. In her own words, Sophie gave us an update about her international trip, “I didn’t have any thoughts of El Salvador before I went. I couldn’t imagine what life would be like so far away. My first impression of El Salvador is when I got out of the airport. It was so hot, and noisy, like going into a tropical bird sanctuary.

Sophie in a bee suit Ciara Gapper GuayamangoI wasn’t prepared for how hilly it was! One of the best schemes I visited was CAFODs project in Guaymango, where the community were supported in bee keeping. The reason I really liked this was because you could really see the difference that CAFOD was making. By teaching people new bee keeping methds, they could produce more honey, that they could eat themselves and sell as well.

I met lots of inspirational people, with great passion and drive and that made me think about how I could do more with the resources I have at home. I would love to keep bees at the bottom of my garden. Of all the people I met, one person sticks out in my mind, Feliciano, he was Edelmera’s brother in law. He showed us all around his land and gave us coconuts that he and his brother Martir had just climbed up the tree to get. He showed us his bee hives. We spent the afternoon with Him, his wife carmen, Edelmera and Martir, which is the best afternoon I had in the whole trip. sophie in school with hearts el salvador

I spent some time with local school children and brought the hearts with messages from Holy Name Primary School and told them children in Year 3,4 and 5 were thinking about them and praying for them. The children in the class in El Salvador wrote messages back. It is important to let the children know that they are connected in this way. It has a really big impact.

Sophie hearts kids el salvador

We visited the site of the Romero Cross workshops, I even got to make my own. Romero crosses have been such a symbol of CAFOD, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have one so it was an amazing opportunity to see how they were made and to get to make one myself! Poverty is caused in the rural area by harsh weather conditions and changing weather patterns. Everyone in El Salvador was so happy and grateful for the things they had, even when they were telling us about their hardships, they would still say ‘thanks be to god’ and be so thankful that they were still alive and surrounded by people they love.

My first impression of Nicaragua, was how open Managua was as a city. There were large open spaces which was the complete opposite of San Salvador. I don’t see it as learning about myself, I see it as more broadening my horizons of understanding. I didn’t see the trip as a journey of self discovery, more a journey of discovering others. Doing craft with the old people in San Salvador. I never thought that me making cards at home and learning how to cut out shapes would ever come in useful on the other side of the world, but the fact that it did really showed me how similar our countries are”

If you would like Sophie to visit your parish or school to hear more about the CAFOD supported projects and partners she visited, please get in touch or call (0113) 275 9302.

Sophie has taken a year out to volunteer for CAFOD as a ‘gapper’ along with several other young people on CAFOD’s gap year programme, which gives them an opportunity to volunteer in the UK, gain experience, develop leadership skills and visit CAFOD partners and the communities we work with.

If you would like to know more about CAFOD’s Step Into the Gap scheme click here