At the March meeting of the Missions Committee it was decided that every two months there will be a focus on one of the mission charities supported by St John’s. This month the focus is on The Children’s Society which means you will be able to find out much more about The Children’s Society and how you can help support their vital work. There will be a display in the foyer with lots of information and, on Sunday 7th May, there will be a speaker representing The Children’s Society who will tell us a lot more about what they do. In addition, Ken and I invite you to visit our garden on Saturday 20th May where we will be serving refreshments in aid of The Children’s Society - further details will be available nearer the time.
So what exactly does The Children’s Society do?
They fight child poverty on several fronts:
- By nurturing children in their early years through children's centres and other services.
- By strengthening families through providing advice, information and family support.
- By providing a lifeline for destitute families, including the very basics for survival.
- By running a major campaign to expose the damage that debt causes to children’s lives.
- By supporting families out of the debt trap by providing practical debt advice in their children's centres.
- By supporting young people on The Children's Commission on Poverty to investigate and expose the real impact that poverty has on children's lives.
- By forging major alliances with many other groups, to increase their influence and expertise to bring about even greater change.
- By lobbying local and national decision-makers around poverty, destitution and welfare reform.
They tackle neglect and support victims directly:
- By helping hundreds of thousands of young carers have a proper childhood.
- By providing support for young runaways and victims of sexual exploitation.
- By supporting and speaking out for unaccompanied asylum-seekers and victims of trafficking.
- By supporting families to support teenagers at risk of harm.
- By providing immediate help to tackle parental and teenage substance misuse.
- By providing life-changing therapy and counselling for teenagers and young adults struggling with mental and emotional health issues.
How can you help?
Unlike those that receive a fixed share of the church’s annual income, money is raised for The Children’s Society here at St John’s in several ways:
- through the annual Christingle Service
- sale of Christmas Cards
- house collection boxes
- community boxes
- ad-hoc fundraising activities
Currently there are almost 40 members of our congregation who have a house collection box. Once a year I empty these boxes of loose change and am amazed at how much we manage to collect. In 2016 we collected over £600. It really is a matter of every penny counts! So, if you haven’t yet got a box, please contact me and I can arrange to give you one.
In addition to the individual house collection boxes, you can also purchase The Children’s Society Christmas cards off me and support the annual Christingle service and ad hoc events such as our Open Garden on the 20th May.
The work of The Children’s Society is as important now as it has ever been. Many thanks to everyone who already give so generously of their time and money, and please do take every opportunity to continue this support through prayer and giving.
(St John’s Representative for The Children’s Society