Pete McCann – Education Volunteer Coordinator, CAFOD Birmingham
Pete responded to an appeal for volunteers made in 2014 at his parish church, Holy Cross and St Francis in Walmley, Sutton Coldfield. His background in education made him ideal for the new role of Education Volunteer Coordinator and Pete has really developed and expanded this role over the past three years. He works from our Volunteer Centre once a week and his focus is to promote our team of school volunteers to schools across the diocese and support them in arranging visits to do assemblies and workshops.
Pete contacts schools each term to promote our school volunteers and invite them to take up our offer of an assembly or workshop to hear more about our work. He is very organised and his great gift for communicating our work to schools has made a huge difference to the numbers of visits that now take place each term.
Pete also supports us in recruiting new volunteers and managing our existing team. He plays a significant role in helping us to organise our termly ‘Refresher’ training days and presents an update on how our school volunteer programme is progressing. He is great at analysing our school visit statistics and presenting them in a very positive and accessible way. He is also known for his lovely homemade soups which he often brings to share at our meetings!
As well as being kept very busy with his coordinating role Pete also finds time to occasionally visit schools as well. He is a very talented musician and always tries to incorporate music into his visits when he can, which always goes down well with pupils.
Pete explained why he wanted to volunteer for CAFOD and what motivates him:
‘I was due to retire from my job and saw it as a great opportunity to be involved in educating children and young people on issues of global justice. After a career as a special educator and many years as a school governor at Bishop Walsh Catholic School, here was a chance to help with co-ordinating CAFOD’s education programme, enabling me to support the Catholic mission of our schools and other supporters, more widely.’
‘I feel fortunate to have had such an inspirational and effective team to work alongside, both at the Volunteer Centre and ‘out in the field’. My experience of seeing at first hand the enthusiasm and energy of children, young people, school staff and parents in engaging with CAFOD’s messages has been a source of great joy over the past three years!’
We are very grateful to Pete for all his support. His enthusiasm, his good humour and his commitment to CAFOD is inspiring and is helping to bring CAFOD’s work to an increasing number of young people across our diocese. Thank you for being such a great colleague and member of our team Pete.