With the onset of the coronavirus leaving many spending more time inside, organisations have swung into action moving their activities online, including UK charity CAFOD, which hopes its digital events and resources will unite international communities.
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused countless school and office closures along with the cancellation of many large-scale events – including sports and music concerts – and has resulted in many offline activities finding a new home online.
After charity CAFOD had to cancel over a hundred events, its staff worked swiftly to create a comprehensive range of online activities and communities to make sure that their volunteers and supporters didn’t miss out.
Michael Palacios, CAFOD’s digital communications manager, said: “We have had an amazing response from supporters online engaging with the virtual activities. We’re certainly in uncharted waters, but everyone is pulling together and showing such great community spirit.
“Last week, we set up a Facebook CAFOD community group and so far, we’ve had nearly 300 connections. It is proving to be an excellent way for communities to stay updated, co-ordinate efforts, and support one another.
“We also have our social media pages and e-mail newsletters to get the word out, in addition to a calendar of exciting online sessions, which have been created by our teams around the world.”
CAFOD’s calendar of online sessions is set to be released in weekly instalments, so people can stay connected through regular updates.
So far, the sessions planned include talks from the charity’s director, Christine Allen, interviews with international aid experts, and a wellbeing workshop.
“Our online resources are also a powerful tool to help us to see outside our houses to the wider world and remember that the communities we work alongside still need our support,” continued Mr Palacios.
“People still continue to give generously to CAFOD – putting their faith into action – and during these challenging times, we will continue to do what is needed for our donation systems to stay up and running; especially online.
“We know that every donation received changes lives in some of the most vulnerable and marginalised communities around the world.”
Find the weekly timetable of CAFOD’s online events at: cafod.org.uk/Volunteer/Volunteer-resources/Online-talks
Picture: CAFOD supporters. (CAFOD).