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Saturday, December 10, 2016
CAFOD to move to new home
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¬†CAFOD is planning to relocate its London offices from Brixton and build new premises in land adjoining St George's Cathedral, Southwark in Waterloo by 2008. The move is necessary because the current home on the Stockwell Road is no longer big enough to cope with the charity's size. St George's Cathedral, Southwark has long term plans to renew and enhance the Amigo Hall, its community centre, and to improve its use, and to use the space available. "The growth in our international programme and the rising demands on us as we move closer to our partners overseas, to fulfil growing needs in the developing world, means we can no longer fit into the office in Brixton" said a spokesman. The project will enable the first phase of these plans to be implemented, which will refurbish the hall to serve the needs of the Cathedral, the diocese, the local community, and CAFOD itself. When CAFOD moved to Brixton in 1982, its total international programme was less than £2 million and it had fewer than 30 staff. The charitiy's total international spending has now reached just over £40m, a growth which required an investment in staff. This meant that by February 2006 there was 230 staff in Brixton. After investigating several options, including buying or renting new property nearby, or moving outside London, the opportunity of developing a new site is the most cost-effective long-term option. CAFOD has commissioned draft plans and done feasibility studies to ensure any building on the site can comply with "right to light" and planning restrictions and can still meet its needs. The project will be funded from the sale of the present site, from managing its reserves differently, and from other trusts. CAFOD is not looking to raise funds from supporters. CAFOD chair, Bishop John Rawsthorne of Hallam, said: "It is the right time to move for CAFOD and the land available at St Georges Cathedral, Southwark provides a perfect solution. The growth in our international programme and the rising demands on us as we move closer to our partners overseas, to fulfil growing needs in the developing world, means we can no longer fit into the office in Brixton. "As our work has become more complex, we need to invest in programme support and operating costs, and that includes finding a building that works for us. We are committed to ensuring the costs of the move are as low as possible in keeping with our responsibility and reputation as a wise and good steward of resources. "One of the exciting features of life at the Cathedral is the multi-cultural diversity of our congregation, many of whom come from places in which CAFOD is doing much needed work." Archbishop Kevin McDonald of Southwark said: "We are very happy to collaborate with CAFOD in this way. Their work with the poor internationally is something of which Catholics in England and Wales are justly proud. "The new offices will give them a home from which to continue their vital work and expand to meet the demands of the 21st century. The redevelopment will also bring much to the local community and to the Diocese of Southwark." Canon James Cronin, Dean of St George's Cathedral, Southwark said: "We are delighted to have this unique opportunity to work in partnership with CAFOD. "One of the exciting features of life at the Cathedral is the multi-cultural diversity of our congregation, many of whom come from places in which CAFOD is doing much needed work. The Cathedral has been a long time supporter of CAFOD. We look forward to forging even closer links and we value the contribution CAFOD makes to our local community through its education programmes and by continuing to raise our awareness of the needs of others."
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