As five new volunteers begin their gap year adventure with CAFOD, there is still an opportunity to join this year's cohort, with places for the programme still available.
CAFOD's Step into the Gap programme, which is this year celebrating its tenth anniversary, has just announced that in addition to the volunteers who are already enrolled in the programme, there are still places available for the gap year, which will begin this September.
Julia Corcoran, the Leadership Development Coordinator for the Step into the Gap programme, said: "I completed the gap year programme a few years ago, and it really has changed my life for the better. At first, I was nervous about applying, but filling out that form has lead me to where I am today.
"The gap year programme is the perfect opportunity for young people who have just received their A level results, or have just finished university, and are unsure what their next step is, but know they want to make a difference to communities across the world."
The Step into the Gap programme is different to other gap year programmes as it gives young people the opportunity to work alongside the Catholic community in either a retreat centre, university chaplaincy or school chaplaincy.
At their placements, volunteers have the chance to share the stories of CAFOD's overseas communities and inspire others to act for global issues like climate change and the refugee crisis.
Volunteers will also have the opportunity to visit a CAFOD project in either Guatemala or Cambodia, where they witness first-hand the impact donations from CAFOD supporters have on communities living in poverty.
"The gap year offers both practical and spiritual development", continued Julia, "from the chance to improve leadership skills and experience a working environment, to the retreats that give space to grow and explore faith.
"There is definitely lasting effect for those who take part, with many alumni continuing to work towards creating a more just world. I would advise anyone who is thinking of applying to just go for it - you never know where it might lead you."
The Step into the Gap programme is open to young adults aged 18-30 and offers the opportunity to live and work in a UK community for a year and to visit a CAFOD project overseas. Find out more at: www.cafod.org.uk/gapyear
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