Caritas Portsmouth is part of the Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth

Our Mission

To support parishes in their journey to become missionary communities, reaching out to the those on the margins to share the love and mercy of God with the wider world in practical ways.

Caritas will help parishes, pastoral areas, diocesan groups and Catholic schools to develop their own local social action projects which address a defined need in the community. This will most often be a practical need such as homelessness, refugees, asylum seekers, food poverty, mental health, loneliness as well as projects that help care for our Common Home.

The projects will evangelise Catholic parishes, especially volunteers, and those in the wider community whom they serve, by promoting faith in action and witnessing to the infinite Mercy of God. Opportunities for conversation, achieved through presence and relationship, also have the potential to draw those on the peripheries into a deeper relationship with Christ and his Church.

People sitting at a table eating their meals and chatting and laughing together

How we do it

  • Guide initial research into the local area to identify specific needs
  • Helping to design a project which is consistent with Catholic Social Teaching
  • Assisting in planning and development for the project
  • Helping to identify and evaluate partner organisations (eg other charities)
  • Helping to draft funding applications
  • Guiding monitoring and evaluation
  • Supporting volunteer recruitment, training and management
  • Helping to facilitate partnership working with other parish groups, churches and charities to form a collaborative network to make best use of expertise and resources
  • Respond to unexpected local or national events that require a quick, diocese-wide response eg cost of living crisis

Caritas Volunteers

Volunteers working within Caritas projects have great impact to the lives of the people with whom they interact. 

Our goal is to build community where everyone gives and obtains  the support they need. People have a chance to meet face-to-face, to encounter. This builds mutual understanding, respect  and resilience into our communities. 

“Today, when the networks and means of human communication have made unprecedented advances, we sense the challenge of finding and sharing a “mystique” of living together, of mingling and encounter, of embracing and supporting one another, of stepping into this flood tide which, while chaotic, can become a genuine experience of fraternity, a caravan of solidarity, a sacred pilgrimage. greater possibilities for communication thus turn into greater possibilities for encounter and solidarity for everyone. If we were able to take this route, it would be so good, so soothing, so liberating and hope-filled! To go out of ourselves and to join others is healthy for us. To be self-enclosed is to taste the bitter poison of immanence, and humanity will be worse for every selfish choice we make.” Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium 2013.

InSight@St Johns

If you are interested in volunteering, please contact us at [email protected]