Churches and schools in and around Swindon have raised thousands of pounds to help the poor and needy in villages in the third world, linking in with CAFOD's (Catholic Agency for Overseas Development) project to buy life saving items.
|Cows bought by money raised in Wiltshire|
Catholic schools and churches in the Swindon Deanery raised money and bought so called world gifts over a 5 week period during Christmas and New Year. Eight parishes and seven schools, across the town, were involved with the fund raising.
A wide range of items were purchased like; school starter kits, which has books, stationery, pens, paper and a bag for pupils. Also chickens for families in poor villages and a life saving water supply for an area that has no adequate provision.
Robert Barrett, St Peter's church in West Swindon, helped organise the fund raising. He said: "The £34,000 has effectively built a total of 3 virtual villages - but in real terms the money and gifts donated will go to CAFOD so they can distribute the aid to developing areas around the globe."
|Children benefitting from school aid|
He added: "The response has been amazing, we didn't expect to get the amount of gifts or cash which we have. We will definitely do this again this coming Christmas. We also had groups buying gifts, like the choir at Holy Rood church clubbing together to buy a cow or the children who raised £500 to buy a community water supply."
The Bishop of Clifton, Right Reverend Declan Lang said: I think this was a great sign of generosity of the Catholic community both young and old and very practical way to work for peace and good will amongst all people."
You can listen to an interview with Robert Barrett by clicking on the audio link above, and if you are interested in helping CAFOD and their future projects you can go to their website via the link on the right hand side of this page.