OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALocal psychologist and street pastor is spending nine months on a life-changing adventure in the Seychelles.

Victoria Howard, an occupational psychologist and the co-ordinator of Penzance Street Pastors, from Newlyn, Penzance, will be spending nine months living and volunteering with the church in the Seychelles.

The 61-year-old, who is a member of St John the Baptist church in Penzance, will be on a ‘mature gap year’ with the international Christian charity Us (also known as United Society).

Victoria, who is raising funds for the trip herself, is following in the footsteps of her father, who was an archdeacon in the Indian Ocean. She said: ‘I had been planning to do an overseas placement once my younger son graduated. I am looking forward to learning from others in a different culture and having the opportunity to live more simply and let go of many of the distractions of life so that I can develop a closer walk with God and other Christians.’

Victoria will be on placement with the Journey with Us programme, which offers opportunities for self-funding volunteers, aged 18 to 80 – including placements for clergy and trainee priests.

Victoria is planning to travel to the Seychelles in late October 2014, having recently attended a one-week training programme with other Journey with Us participants.

The Journey with Us programme, run by Us, is an opportunity to experience the life and work of the church in another culture. Find out more at www.weareUs.org.uk/journey