Leicestershire primary schools #giveitup for Lent!

Maggie Mairura, Community Participation Coordinator shares some inventive ideas from primary schools in Leicestershire!

Many thanks to staff, parents and students at 3 Leicestershire schools for really getting involved in inventive ways this Lent in taking part in CAFOD Schools #giveitupchallenge.

The Chaplaincy Team at St. Peter’s Catholic Primary School, Earl Shilton, prepared and chopped vegetables donated by staff members in the school’s Prayer Room and then, with the permission of the school ‘s kitchen staff, Anita and Tracey, school Chaplain Jean Connor and her husband Mark cooked the soup, all 32 litres of it, ready for serving the next day during school lunchtime.

st peters

St Peter’s Earl Shilton

Pupils and staff paid £2.00 for a bowl of soup and a bread roll.  On the day the Chaplaincy Team sold £106.00 worth of soup.  More was sold to parents at the end of the school day and finally, they took what was left to an Evening of Reflection on the works of the Holy Spirit, a 6 week course led by  young people of the parish.  The Holy Spirit was truly at work as they sold the remaining containers of soup!  £154.00 in total, so with all donations being doubled by the UK Government this Lent, this makes it an amazing £308.00!

Jean said “We had a great time doing this and one Year One pupil declared it was the best soup she’d ever tasted!!  It is great for the whole school and parish to be able to support CAFOD’s work and giving us the opportunity to help people like Svondo and his friends in Zimbabwe!”

ctk obstacle

Sponsored Obstacle Course at Christ the King Leicester

In Leicester, Christ the King came up with two great sponsored events as part of the Lenten Fundraising for CAFOD.  3SN undertook a sponsored obstacle course!

Donate to CAFOD this Lent  



And then 6JB took part in a sponsored dance ‘busting some moves on the dance floor’ all afternoon!!!  I am guessing that more events are planned by other form groups!

ctk dance
6JB Sponsored Danc





Finally, St Charles in Measham organisesd a good school favourite – a non- school uniform day, but with a unique twist –  ‘Be a goodie, wear a hoodie’!It is truly inspiring and uplifting to see how our Catholic schools around the Diocese are engaging with this Lent’s #giveitup challenge.  And all donations will be doubled by the UK government.

st charles measham

‘Be a goodie, wear a hoodie’  at St Charles, Measham



We have a small but growing team of School Volunteers who have the pleasure and privilege of visiting our schools to present assemblies and to say thank you for all the hard work they have done to support CAFOD.  Have you got some time to offer to join us?

Be a CAFOD School Volunteer 



Family Fast Day at the Cathedral

Thanks to Liz Doona, CAFOD parish volunteer at the Cathedral and the Women of St Barnabas for organising the Family Fast Day Soup Lunch on Friday 23/2/18

Soup and sandwiches were being served and all money raised going to CAFOD.  A tombola stall was also organised with a prize every time!

Lent Family Fast Day Soup Recipes


Over 50 people attended and the sum of £275 was raised.  As well as enjoying some lovely home made food and cakes, during the 2 hours in Cathedral Hall, I was able to give 3 brief presentations about the work of CAFOD and the work of our partners in Zimbabwe.

Fundraising for Lent Family Fast Day  

I look forward to welcoming the Women of St Barnabas to CAFOD Nottingham Volunteer Centre when the weather improves! Special thanks to my young assistant and sticker monitor!

DFID-Logo-example-1And as if by magic, this donation will be matched by the UK Government!

All donations made to CAFOD between 13/2 and 12/5, UKAid will double, to the sum of £5million

Family Fast Day at Our Lady’s in Sleaford: School and Parish!

So after my visit to St Hugh’s in Lincoln, I traveled south to Sleaford. My first stop the parish of Our Lady of Good Counsel to meet up with Parish Volunteer Barbara and her husband Mike.  A group of about 15 people were gathered for coffee after the morning Mass.

20180219_113740After brief introductions it was my opportunity to thank the parish for their continued and steadfast support – from our database records which go back to 1990 they have donated an amazing £60,275.13!  Something to celebrate! They have consistently raised funds at Fast Days and also responded to Emergency Appeals.  As well as sharing about this Family Fast Day I was also able to recount stories from Livison Chipatiso, our Programme Officer in Zimbabwe who I had accompanied the previous week.     For lunch, we joined the Churches Together in Sleaford for their Lenten Soup lunch at the local Anglican church, which will be hosted by Our Lady’s next Monday.

Then it was over to Our Lady of Good Counsel School.  I was immediately struck by the display in the entrance.  A beautiful tree with home made Romero Crosses hanging from it.

romero cross tree (2) It was lovely to then be able to tell the students that Bishop Patrick had recently returned from El Salvador and had visited the crypt of Blessed Oscar Romero.  A real link between school, diocese, CAFOD and our partners overseas.


Who was Oscar Romero?

Once the whole school was assembled it was my second opportunity of the day to share with our students the theme of this year’s Family Fast Day and encourage them with their #giveitupchallenge.  Every student would be taking home a pledge for them to sign, having given some thought to what they were going to give up and how much they hoped to raise for CAFOD.

CAFOD’s Family Fast Day resources for schools

Again the atmosphere in the school was warm and welcoming, eager to take an active part in the assembly and keen to answer questions, though maybe not so keen to be in the photo!20180219_150140

As mentioned in my previous post, I find it so inspiring and uplifting to visit our Diocesan schools but that is not my job – mine is to recruit more school volunteers to add to our growing team! So if you want to be inspired and uplifted and have an opportunity to nourish our young minds, please do get in touch!

Being a school volunteer