We’re thrilled to introduce Iona and Sarah, who are just starting out on their Step into the gap experience with CAFOD. They’ve been with us for just about a month and are settling in well at St Mary’s Catholic College in Blackpool, where they are placed in the Chaplaincy Team.
Over to you ladies…….
Hi, I’m Iona, one of the new CAFOD Gappers for 2012/2013. I am based at St. Mary’s Catholic College in Blackpool for the year. I’m 25, with three younger brothers. I was born in London, in fact Brixton, which I found out was the previous site of the CAFOD head office; coming full circle.
I’ve moved around a fair bit, including a 7-year period in Hungary, and my family is now based in Cheshire. I love studying, and have graduated several times: in Philosophy from Leeds, an MA in Graphic Design also from Leeds, and finally some post-graduate Theology at Chester.
At that point I unfortunately ran out of money…so had to find a different avenue. This in part led me into the voluntary sector – not hugely profitable, but has thus far provided a roof over my head. It was also an opportunity to give back in thanks for all I have received. Last year I volunteered at a Catholic Youth Retreat Centre in the Lake District – Castlerigg Manor, and now here I am, living and working as a ‘gapper’ in Blackpool.
I’m thrilled to be working for CAFOD. I am most excited about all the doors that are being opened as a result, and for the privilege of experiencing a year with such variety.
I’m particularly looking forward to working and living overseas with some of the people we see in CAFOD campaigns, and experiencing face to face the reality of those in need. I’m convinced that all the people and places will have far more to offer me than I will them. I hope to be able to bring home their stories in order to engage the young people I work with in their lives and situations too.
Iona’s quickfire questions
Morning or evening? I am NOT a morning person, and neither do I seem to be particularly good at late nights, so I suppose I am a midday person..?
What superpower would you have? The power to fly.
Your favourite smell? Burning leaves in Autumn.
Your Dream job? Either some sort of musical artist, or a creative artist (graphic designer, photographer..)
Your favourite sport? Currently barefoot running – and yes I have succumbed to Vibram 5-fingers! (look them up if you don’t know them!)Aesthetically displeasing, but fantastic to run in.
If you could live anywhere in the world…? Somewhere that combined sea and mountains.
Now over to Sarah…..
Hi, I’m Sarah, the other St Mary’s Gapper! So far I love the community at St Mary’s, especially in the Chaplaincy. There’s a really family-like atmosphere, and it’s great to be part of such a big team.
My first job was as a Youth leader at a retreat centre called Soli House, I ‘worked’ there for two years and it was ace.
Working for CAFOD is great because I love working with people. It’s a great way to meet some really fantastic, inspirational young people and make a difference. It’s nice to belong to an exciting and thriving charity where faith is really celebrated through actions as well as thoughts.
I think the international trip this year is something really exciting, but I’m sure to miss St Mary’s whilst I’m away. I also think the trip will be the most challenging bit of Step Into The Gap -but my excitement for it definitely outweighs any nerves! I’ll definitely struggle without my hair straighteners though!
Sarah’s quickfire questions
Morning or evening? A bit of both. I don’t like to waste the day!
What superpower would you have? Superstrength! I can never seem to open plastic bottles!
Your favourite smell? Christmas. Things like Cinnamon.
Your Dream job? I don’t really know, but I’d love to work with lots of people. Youth work is great because you get to act like a kid!
Your favourite sport? To watch it’d probably be diving, or gymnastics; I love the artistry of them.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be and why? Somewhere quiet and picturesque (but not too far from shops!). I love Italy; it’d be nice to have the Vatican in walking distance!
Please join us in wishing Iona and Sarah all the best for the year ahead, and keep them in your prayers. Exciting times ahead!