Connecting with Faith and Creativity through CAFOD

Jessica uses her wonderful creative skills to inspire others and share CAFOD’s work.

Meet Jessica Garcia, one of our fantastic social media volunteers, living in London. She shares how working with CAFOD has reminded her that change for good is always possible, and how volunteering has allowed her creative juices to flow and reconnect her to her Catholic faith.

Hi Jessica. Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m Jessica Garcia and I’m from Spain. I’m 28 years old. I am currently a freelance journalist and creative and work in a restaurant. I’ve just finished my studies in development at Westminster University in London.

How have you been involved with CAFOD?

Due to my studies and professional background, I have been helping CAFOD on social media platforms, especially on Twitter.

What first attracted you to CAFOD?

I would say two things combined together. First, CAFOD represents my faith and secondly, I studied development so my aim was to work with an organisation dedicated to global development. However, the fact of Catholic faith was very important for me, as I am not doing it in a professional way, but in a personal/spiritual way too.

What’s been the best thing about volunteering for CAFOD?

I was able to reconnect with my faith, as well as using my skills and creativity to spread CAFOD’s work and goals. The fact that I am free (within the norms) to use different pictures, videos, gifs, etc. it makes it more refreshing, as we need to attract more youth to keep our work going on, until we can eradicate the injustices other communities suffer.

What are some of your best memories?

I would say that coming from an African and Spanish background, all the online talks about South America or Africa were really refreshing to me. I have learned a lot from people working in country offices, and also with partners that work with CAFOD.

We want to thank you for the tremendous contribution you have made to CAFOD’s work.

The pleasure is mine. CAFOD has helped me to regain that empathy that seemed lost because of how the world works nowadays. It was important for me to remember my Catholic values and to never give up on humanity. There are great souls around us. However, TV and social media has made us believe the human race is evil. So a lot of people like me, ended up thinking nothing would get better. CAFOD was a key element to remind me change is possible and the light always shines.

​​​​​​​Thank you CAFOD, and the amazing people in the Southwark Team that guided me everyday Marine, Sarah and Celeste

Did you enjoy knowing more about Jessica and her volunteering role?

Meet more of our Volunteers and find out about all our volunteering opportunities.

Get inspired by St Mary’s World Gifts celebration.

Unsure what to get someone this holiday season? Consider putting a smile on everyone’s face by purchasing a world gift. See how St. Mary’s organised a bake sale to purchase a community water supply World Gift. By advertising CAFOD‘s World Gifts, we can change the lives of those in need.

parish coffee

St. Mary’s coffee team enjoying Irish Coffees at their wonderous bake sale!

This past weekend, St. Mary’s in Clapham hosted a bake sale for World Gifts! All the proceeds are going towards a fund for a water supply for an entire community! This is a great way to get the whole parish involved and raise money for World Gifts. St. Mary’s sold cakes, brownies and all kinds of desserts that were enjoyed by all. They also had a coffee team on duty who were mixing delicious coffee to enjoy with their desserts. This is an amazing way to bring people together for the holidays and positively change communities.

A community water supply will cost £750, and will supply a constant source of clean water for many people. One example of this World Gift in action was in Uganda when CAFOD was able to fix a waterhole, provide the training and the necessary tools to Cecilia’s community with the proceeds from CAFOD’s community water gift. Cecilia says, “Now we have enough water for food, to clean ourselves and our clothes, and for our animals to drink.” World Gifts such as these will have a lasting impact and can change the lives of many.

Congratulations to St. Mary’s in Clapham, they raised over £600 at their bake sale! This is fantastic!

Check out World Gifts Today

What are World Gifts?

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Honour a Loved One through a Candlelight Fund

November is the month of Remembrance for the Catholic community. It is a time during which we pray for our departed loved ones. Southwark just honoured those who have passed away this past weekend with our Memorial Mass at The Holy Family Parish in Sanderstead.  One way to honour their legacy would be to set up a Candlelight Fund.  

This November marked the 100th anniversary of the end of  World War I. We honour and remember all who had lost their lives, their loved ones or know anyone who suffered at the expense of the War. It is also a time to honour our close relatives and friends who passed away. If you would like to set up a lasting tribute to a loved one or continue their legacy, hear from a CAFOD supporter on what her Candlelight fund means to her.

Kathy’s Candlelight Fund for her son Robbie

Kathy who has opened a Candlelight fund for her son Robbie

Kathy who has opened a Candlelight fund for her son Robbie

Kathleen says: “I lost my only son, Robbie Sharp, in 2009, who lived with cerebral palsy from birth. Robbie needed lots of love, care and attention, which he was never short of. I was so grateful to all the volunteers who had helped Robbie, a few years later I wanted to put something back into the community.” A couple of years after her son Robbie died, Kathleen decided to turn her grief into something positive and set up a Candlelight Fund in Robbie’s memory

“Robbie was a wonderful young man and it is a great comfort to me to see that his memory is living on and he would be very happy to know that he is helping people around the world. There are also annual Candlelight Masses around the country and I have attended one locally which was very memorable. Robbie’s candlelight fund has raised over £6470 now.”

Set-up your own Candlelight funds 

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