A Nottingham volunteer is travelling to a summer camp in Portugal to meet Pope Francis and help create shifts to more sustainable lifestyles. 

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CAFOD volunteer Jason Sheehan

From May 9-14, photography student Jason Sheehan, 21,  will travel to Fatima in Portugal with the aid agency CAFOD to attend a workshop inspired by Pope Francis’ environmental letter Laudato Si’.
 
The three-day international workshop will include sessions on how to better live together, farm work, a ’walk for change’ around Fatima and a mass led by Pope Francis.
 

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Jason will be meeting Pope Francis at the event

Jason was inspired to apply to the workshop after volunteering for two years at the Briars Catholic Youth Retreat Centre in Nottingham. “I became so aware of the potential young people have to make a change within their schools, communities and wider world,” said Jason.

 
It seems easy that when something isn’t on TV or a news website to think that it must not be an issue anymore or it’s solved but the effects of climate change are still being felt by the most vulnerable and for change to happen it begins with awareness.”
 
The event will be attended by over 100 youth representatives aged 18-30, from Slovakia, Spain, Belgium, Canada, France and Portugal.
 
“The thing that excites me the most is that I am going to be learning from people with different experiences from across the world,” said Jason. “The message I am hoping to share would be about how powerful communication is within our current world.”
 
Following the workshop, the delegates hope that their experience will allow them to raise awareness

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Jason volunteering for CAFOD.

about climate change, sustainable living and share how local communities can make a difference.

 
“I’m hoping to capture the stories that I hear to share them with others. I want to respond by pushing myself to be active, to create, to learn and to share with the hope that someone else will start to make changes in their life.
 
“I hope to raise awareness about the effects of climate change but also awareness about the people, young and old, that are making changes in their life to combat it.”
 
This experience will be followed by a similar camp, held in Belgium in July where further CAFOD representatives will be present. 

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