All Saints’ Church has for some time had a collection point at the rear of the church for a Maidstone Food Bank. The Parochial Church Council has received the following message from the Diocese of Canterbury about those in financial difficulty in Kent including the number of people who are using food banks. Please Read More for further information.
Recent figures suggest that the number of people in Kent who have accessed a food bank in the last 11 months has risen to more than 17,000. That’s a rise of 11 per cent since last year. Low incomes, changes to benefits, debt and homelessness are just some of reasons which The Trussell Trust say are behind the increase.
It’s indicative of the struggle many people are facing each day to make ends meet. As Development Officer for Together Canterbury – the Diocese’s partnership with Church Urban Fund – I am delighted to share with you details of two initiatives we have organised to help churches assist those in their communities who need support.
The first is the Cash Smart: Credit Savvy scheme. This is a simple and effective system designed to teach people how to budget and improve their money skills. Two ‘Training the Trainer’ events are available for those within our churches and charitable organisations, which will enable them to share valuable budgeting skills with others in their community.
The second opportunity is Acts 435 – the Archbishop of York’s online giving charity. It works by posting real cases of need via their website, which users can then decide to contribute funds to or not; you can also restrict searches to your region too. Requests for help can only come once received and verified by a designated church advocate.
A typical case might be an elderly couple needing a new fridge, or a young mother fleeing domestic abuse requiring help to buy nappies for her baby.
The scheme already works very well across the country as ACTS 435 recognises that people want to give, little and often, to people in genuine need. We would really like to support this fantastic initiative, and so are looking to recruit Advocates and Donors from across our churches so that anyone in need in Kent has a place to go for help.
Everyone is invited to an information evening on Tuesday 30 May in Canterbury. It will be attended by Jenny Herrera, the Director of ACTS 435, which is a great opportunity to hear first-hand the benefits of the scheme. To attend the evening, or for more information, please contact me, Keith Berry at email@example.com or phone 07834 573668
I look forward to meeting you at one of these events and thank you for your support.
Together Canterbury Development Worker
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