Celebrating Young Volunteers



peruvian lent lunch2

Fiona and Michelle at the Peruvian Lent Lunch 

Fiona Sim and Michelle Udoh, both from our diocese are currently on the Step-into-the-Gap programme. They were both Youth Leaders in Clifton Youth and have recently spoke at a Youth Gathering and they reflect on their year’s placements and their experiences of their time in Peru with CAFOD partner projects.


Every year, young volunteers put themselves forward to be part of our Step into the Gap programme where they work at a UK based project for a year, which includes everything from working with other young people to being part of Chaplaincy team. They also spend a few weeks travelling abroad to see some of our partner programmes and meet the people who they are helping.

Learn more about Step into the Gap

Michelle said:

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The girls in Peru 

“The fact that I was able to visit CAFOD’s partner organisations, whilst experiencing a whole different culture is mind-blowing. Gender equality is an issue that I’m really passionate about so having the opportunity to see CAFOD working with partners to empower women is something that really excites me. I am delighted to be able to share stories that will inspire young people.”


“I think what has been inspiring is seeing how CAFOD is helping communities in practical ways to make a change in their lives and communities. It is empowering for them as it gives them dignity. Sharing these experiences with the youth of Clifton diocese, discussing ideas about the Year of Mercy and writing messages of hope for refugees, was incredible!”

Find out more about volunteering

Door of Mercy messages

Fiona and Michelle at a CAFOD youth event 

Fiona said:

“I’ve learned so much from all the wonderful people we met in Peru. I feel so humbled by the hospitality, warmth, and friendship and inspired to continue to work towards change.

“I want to carry on sharing my experiences with people in the UK. I hope to inspire people to take a stand against social injustice in either their own communities or in communities like those we visited in Peru.”

CAFOD volunteering has no age limit; both these volunteers demonstrate the importance of welcoming volunteers despite their age. Jeremiah 1:4-8 says “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go, and whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, declares the Lord.”

Clifton Youth Gathering

The girls presentation about their time in Peru

Each year, thousands of young people discover the work of CAFOD and are inspired to be the change they want to see in their communities. We have a youth leaders programme where young people take part in political action by visiting parliament, they write pieces for the blog reflecting on their experiences and fundraise for CAFOD campaigns. Together they are making a huge difference all over the world.

Each year, thousands of young people discover the work of CAFOD and are inspired to be the change they want to see in their communities.

Young people are the future and we would love to hear about what young people in your area are doing for CAFOD and if you have have been inspired to volunteer with CAFOD contact: clifton@cafod.org.uk

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