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Monday, October 24, 2016
Future leaders plan CAFOD gap year
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Jonathon Lord, Rachel McCarthy, Maria Horkan, Rebecca Ewenhies, Tom Kitchen
Following the release of A-level results, many teenagers are now scrambling to secure a place at University and decide on the next path to take.  But Jonathon Lord, 21, Rachel McCarthy, 21, Maria Horkan, 23, Rebecca Ewenhies, 18, and Tom Kitchen, 18, have chosen to put university plans on hold. They will dedicate their time and effort this year to work with CAFOD, spending time with communities in the UK before embarking on an overseas trip to Africa in January 2011.

Survey results by Gapforce show that graduates are happier, more confident and independent if they take a gap year before university, making the scheme all the more desirable.

‘Step into the Gap’ is a CAFOD-run programme, which enables Catholic students to work with local communities in a variety of settings such as schools, parishes and retreat centres, before taking their skills overseas to spend time with CAFOD partners, who work with local communities to alleviate poverty and tackle social injustice.

Helen Gough, from the Leadership Development team at CAFOD, said: “Step into the Gap is a year out with a difference that demands total commitment from the participants, but the journey they go on will help them to develop leadership skills and build relationships that will last forever. It really is a life changing experience".

The highlight of the scheme, the four-week trip to Africa, will enable the gappers to gain a priceless experience to add to their CV’s and enhance their future job prospects. More importantly, they will be given the chance to learn about themselves and the world we live in, whilst sharing their experience with other young Catholics.

The scheme, which is supported by the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, is now in its second year. Jo Kitterick, CAFOD's Head of Education, said: "We're delighted to be continuing this new scheme for young adults that we hope will give them a really
life-changing experience.

“We recognise that many young Catholics want to explore the world and gain new skills and also expand their faith.”

Nelson Mandela once said: “Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great.”

This group of creative, intelligent young people have already proven they have what it takes to be young leaders of the future. As they embark on this next stage of their lives with CAFOD, we are proud to journey with them.  

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Tags: ‘Step into the Gap’ Jonathon Lord, Maria Horkan, Rachel McCarthy, Rebecca Ewenhies, Tom Kitchen

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