CAFOD director inspires Leicestershire students

Pupils with their trees

Pupils with their trees

Last week, CAFOD's director Christine Allen, spoke at Ramgarhia Community Centre to a packed hall of more than 1,000 students about the role of young people in campaigning for change on issues such as the environment, climate change and global poverty.

Christine said: "It was so motivating to see so many young people finding ways to be good neighbours, both locally and globally.

"They have really taken on board the lessons of caring for our brothers and sisters around the world and are putting it into action with such spirit-filled energy."

Her visit, which was part of St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Multi-Academy Trust's (CMAT) annual 'Feast Day', hoped to inspire students and educate them about the role that international development plays around the world.

Ms Allen was joined by Bishop Patrick McKinney of Nottingham, and both shared their experiences of witnessing the role international development plays in transforming lives for the better, in some of the world's poorest communities.

The Bishop reflected on his recent trip to El Salvador and Nicaragua, where he met with communities supported by CAFOD.

Bishop McKinney said: "CAFOD walks alongside people to ensure that everyone is able to reach their full potential, and we, as disciples, have to ensure that there is no one beyond the reach of our passion to love and care for others."

After the event, each school was gifted a tree to take back and plant at their school.

Ms Allen concluded: "The students of St Thomas Aquinas CMAT are joining millions of other young people around the world leading the way on critical issues that affect our world.

"It's not going to be easy, but they are laying down the roots of leadership and change, to ensure global governments put people and the environment at the heart of decision-making. They can't do it alone, they are counting on all of us to stand with them in action, solidarity, and prayer."

With the start of Lent just around the corner (Ash Wednesday 26 February) the students plan to get involved in CAFOD's Lent campaign by organising football fundraisers to raise awareness of how in the Amazon a piece of land bigger than a football pitch is lost every minute and the homes of people who live there are being threatened.

This year, CAFOD is hoping to work with local experts to reach thousands more families to help defend and protect the precious rivers, forest and animals of the Amazon.

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Tags: Leicestershire , CAFOD, Christine Allen, Environment, Climate Change, Global Poverty

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