More than 2,780 school children from Wales are joining hundreds of fellow walkers to support a Catholic charity’s work helping people to overcome poverty.

Children taking part in CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk
Children taking part in CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk (©2023 CAFOD)

As Ash Wednesday, February 14, marks the start of Lent, walkers across the region and nation are gearing up with their purple laces to take part in CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk, walking 200km over the 40 days of Lent. Thousands of participants are already registered with a bold goal to raise over £300,000.

CAFOD, the international development charity, is now inviting families, schools, and walking enthusiasts in Wales to sign up for its annual fundraiser. 

Walkers taking part in CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk
(©2023 CAFOD)

Neil Roper, Fundraising Events Manager at CAFOD, said:

“We know that Lent arrives earlier this year, but taking on the Big Lent Walk Challenge not only promotes a healthier lifestyle, it also contributes to the fight against global poverty. It’s also an opportunity to embrace the great outdoors.

“Last year we saw thousands of walkers from parishes and schools taking part in the Big Lent Walk, raising much-needed funds for families combating poverty. This year, we’re rallying even more participants to expand our reach to more communities overseas and collectively challenge poverty to take a hike!”

The charity is helping more people like James in Liberia, who needed to gain the skills and tools for his fishing. James is now able to fish safely and sustainably thanks to compasses and GPS fish-tracking systems meaning he can find the best fishing spots and make his way home with an even bigger catch for his family.  

Thousands of schools across England and Wales are taking on CAFOD’s Big Lent Walk to support people like James. Money raised for CAFOD this Lent will enable its local aid workers to reach vulnerable families with vital support. For example:  

  • £16 could buy a life jacket to keep a fisherman safe.
  • £47 could buy a cooler for a fisherman to keep his catch fresh at sea.
  • £120 could buy a GPS fish finder to track fish and find shore in a storm.
  • £375 could buy tables for the community to use to fillet their fish.  

Neil Roper added:

“Embarking on a 200km journey might seem daunting, but it’s manageable – a 5km walk per day over the 40 days of Lent. Whether as a family, group of friends or community event, there are lots of ways to join in. Schools and communities are organising diverse events, from joint Parish walks to class competitions on covering the most distance. It’s not too late to get involved; signing up is easy or for more information visit