Helen Savelli shares her best CAFOD volunteer experience

In celebration of Volunteers’ Week (1-12 June) we’d like to take the opportunity to thank all our volunteers for their help and hard work throughout the year.

Volunteers are an integral part of CAFOD and without them we could not continue to support our global brothers and sisters living in poverty.

CAFOD Turn on the taps at Newmarket

CAFOD volunteers at the East Anglia regional office.

There are over 5,000 CAFOD volunteers across England and Wales who help us throughout the year, from reading at mass and helping in the volunteer centre to working overseas as part of our Step into the Gap programme.

Helen Savelli, 46, and mum-of-four from Norwich, has volunteered for CAFOD for the last seven years, today Helen shares with me why she loves being a school’s volunteer:


Helen and her four children

“For me CAFOD brings back so many memories, its very nostalgic; Lent Fast Days and the Harvest period was always a huge part of growing up, and for my family. I have always been passionate about global justice and wanted to do a small part to assist the alleviation and suffering of poverty.

“ I had been working as a teacher before I stopped teaching to start a family. When I signed up with CAFOD I thought I could maybe be an office volunteer  but they said that with my past teaching experience I could consider being a schools volunteer. Although I was nervous at first as I had been out of teaching for a few years, I absolutely love it now and I really feel that if education can help shape a generations view and people’s attitudes to poverty then it is 100% worth it.


Volunteering in action.

“To be able to carry on giving something back to CAFOD, who do such fantastic work both overseas and with their education resources for young people here.”

“I mean although the fundraising element is important so is the education side of things, we are not preaching just teaching young people about the issues that go on around the world, so they are better equipped to do something about it.”

“The one experience that really stuck out to me was going to give an assembly at Brundall Primary School, in Norwich, the school was not a catholic school and I tailored my presentation a little differently, but at the end children came up to me and told me how inspired they were.

Its just about and caring for others. I felt that moment really encompassed what CAFOD is about, community.”

Despite all this fantastic help, we still need even more volunteers, in particular to help in a parish/school, and with various roles at our volunteer centre around The diocese of East Anglia.

If you would like to volunteer with us please apply online or please ring Stephen Matthews on 01223 358552 │ 07779 804252


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