18th May Holy Name, Leeds: Climate Conversation

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Madeline Woods is a ‘Step into the Gap’ volunteer for CAFOD and this weekend she will be helping the Live Simply’ group from the parish of Our Lady of Kirkstal, to host a Climate Conversation and activities, at Holy Name Church Hall, Cookridge from 2pm – 4pm.

The Live Simply group have invited Alex Sobel MP to meet children from the local catholic primary and secondary schools as well as members of the cubs, scouts and brownies groups. Families who attend the Children’s Liturgy sessions in all three churches in the parishes have also been invited. There will be organised activities for all ages, and a discussion about how we can all act to make our daily lives less damaging to the planet.

The event is targeted at those under the age of 15 and their families who would like to know more about how they can get involved to shape communities of the future, with lowered carbon emissions, sustainable renewable energy and reduced burden on our planet’s natural resources. gappers car uganda

Madeline has recently returned from a CAFOD trip to Uganda and is keen to share her stories from her visit with the young people who will be attending.


“At this event, we will have an inter-generational discussion about how we can all act on climate change, both as individuals and collectively as a parish. Every effort we make to reduce our carbon emissions will have a positive impact for those living in the world’s poorest countries, who often feel the impact of climate change the worst.”

If you would like to attend, please email hnoffice.ourladyofkirkstall@dioceseofleeds.org.uk so we know how many people to expect.

What: Climate Conversation
Who: Alex Sobel MP Leeds North, Madeline Woods (CAFOD Gap Year Volunteer), Our lady of Kirkstal Live Simply group and parish members up to the age of 15 and their families.
Where: Holy Name Church Hall, 52 Otley Old Rd, Leeds LS16 6HW
When: Saturday 18th May, 2pm – 4pm
Why: To challenge and change the systems and structures that cause climate change, and poverty

If you are not able to attend, you can join St Urban’s parishioners on Sunday 19th May for their Creation Celebration, with guest speaker Bernard Balibuno CAFOD’s Country Representative for the Democratic Republic of Congo who will share updates on how our support to communities facing the impact of climate change makes a real difference. For more information about St Urban’s Creation Celebration please click here.

If you would like to know more about how you and your school or parish can get involved with CAFOD’s Our Common Home campaign click here.


Meet Kieran, our new volunteer


Hello, my name is Kieran Tildesley and I am on placement at CAFOD for 1 week as part of my psychology degree course at Leeds Trinity University.

I chose to work with CAFOD because the work they are doing was making a real difference in people’s lives. CAFOD’s work within communities such as Syria and Central African Republic which allowed me an opportunity to investigate the effects that providing the people a chance to better their own life can have.

A story I researched on the CAFOD website told me of how excited a woman from a small village was after being provided with the resources to build a well from which her village could get fresh water. This suggested to me that even the smallest and simplest of things that we would take for granted such as fresh clean water can completely change a person’s life.

CAFOD’s work in South Sudan has recently led them into joining a coalition with Muslim charities in order to help the people that are in need of provisions throughout the country. This is of interest to me because it shows that even though people and religion can have differences, they can still come together to work towards a common goal, demonstrating a message of togetherness.

For CAFOD to be able to maintain their good work in the future, they need to be able to connect with young people and get them involved.

One of the ways in which CAFOD could help to engage young adults in their work is by changing young people’s opinions and views about topics and issues. For many young people the issues surrounding politics and helping others is disinteresting. However, through sponsored events it can be possible to bring the issues to the attention of young people around the people doing the sponsored event. This can encourage young people to get involved in the work of CAFOD as they will be more sympathetic towards a cause if they have friends or family who feel strongly about it and are taking action.

Another way to can engage young people is through online campaigning or petitions. For me, signing online petitions was easier and gave me a sense of accomplishment when the petition passed the 10,000 signatures mark to be debated in the houses of parliament. Furthermore this is more likely to get information about a cause out there as these people may share it with their friends and family.