Minister meets with Norwich Christian charities
2009: Representatives of Norwich
Christian social action charities have met with government minister Sadiq Khan
MP to talk with him about engaging faith communities in the delivery of public services.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department for Communities and Local Government visited Norwich on March 23 and included a visit to look around the newly-opened Norwich Central YMCA.
The visit also included a meeting with representatives from YMCA Norfolk, the Magdalene Group, Pregnancy Crisis Norfolk and Norfolk Street Pastors.
The Under Secretary is keen to hear from faith groups how they are delivering services of benefit to the public and how the government could help them to do that more effectively.
“Faith is a key issue to the government,” said Sadiq. “We recognise that faith groups can reach parts of the community which just cannot be reached by other agencies and they make a vital contribution. The amount of voluntary work the faith communities are undertaking means that if we give them public money, we will get out far more than we put it - it is a no-brainer.
“Faith plays an important part in people’s lives whether they be Christians, Muslims or Buddhists. In the midst of the uncertainties of the global economic crisis, people will look to where they can find certainty. Faith communities can help to provide that. Not just through their messages but through their practical experience and expertise at delivering or signposting services and by giving a sense of hope and optimism for a better future.”
The minister met with Mair Talbot from the Magdalene Project, Tish Ash-Lameer from Pregnancy Crisis Norfolk, John Drake from YMCA Norfolk and Keith Morris from Norfolk Street Pastors.
They told Sadiq about the work of their charities, the vital role volunteers play in most of them and the difficulties they sometimes encountered accessing public finance to support their work.
Pictured above is MP Sadiq Khan during his visit to Norwich Central YMCA with John Drake and reception staff. Pictures courtesy of EDP.