Churches partner with Acts 435 to restore faith
Acts 435 offers a fresh way for churches to respond to practical needs and at the same time restore faith in people. Katie Greene reports.
I’m delighted that Hannah Worsley from Norwich Foodbank and Anna Heydon from Imagine Norfolk Together will joining me for a webinar about the work of Acts 435. It will be taking place at 10.30am on Wednesday July 28.
The webinar will be an informal hour to hear more about our work and how we can be a free resource for churches as they reach out into their communities. People will be able to hear from Anna and Hannah about their experiences of using Acts 435 in their settings.
We currently have around 12 partners in Norfolk, in places such as Gorleston, Diss, Wymondham, Thetford and Ashill, as well as Norwich Foodbank.
Acts 435 exists to serve churches and local charities who are already seeing the desperate need in their communities, or who want to engage with those in need further. It partners with over 600 local churches and charities in the UK and seeks to meet the needs of individuals through an online giving platform.
The requests of beneficiaries are for small, specific needs such as a washing machine, ID documents, carpets, gas and electricity top-ups, counselling fees - the list is endless. Donors are able to go onto our website and donate any amount towards that request. It's a way of crowdfunding for those families and individuals who find themselves in crisis situations, and who have no way to meet these needs otherwise.
Over the last 11 years Acts 435 has directly helped over 30,000 individuals with over £3,100,000. 100% of every donation given goes towards the specific need of the individual or family.
You can take a look at our website to find out more: www.acts435.org.uk.
One person who was helped by Acts 435 was “Miss S”. Hannah Worsley from Norwich Foodbank tells her story below.
Miss S was referred to us for help with a food parcel, and we realised her struggles were exacerbated by the need to buy new school shoes and uniforms for her three children. She has been furloughed, is on a reduced income and is struggling with poor mental health due to only having escaped an abusive relationship. The request was to pay for new shoes and shirts for all three children (aged 10-14).
This is an email we received from her after the items were received:
“Norwich food bank helped me and my children massively, providing my children with essential school items they needed when times were so tough I couldn’t do it myself. My son who’s 13 got some trainers for PE which has helped his performance in lessons as well as boosting his confidence with not having the correct kit. My eldest son who is 14 got a coat and he loves it. His old one was sewn back together about 6 times and was getting too small as they grew so much over lockdown. Again, not getting in trouble at school for wearing hoodies etc has just boosted him massively.
“My little girl who’s 10 got tights and some PE kit. As they have to go in on PE days in kit the warm hoodie etc is keeping her warm and we are very grateful. They all got new school shirts which was such a big weight off my mind and saves on washing the same ones every night. I know covid has been hard for everyone. It has been hard for us to try and settle and the items we received eased the burden massively. It even restored my faith in people again as I had started to just give up. Thank you to all who donated”’
You can sign up for the webinar here: forms.gle/AMc2Vi5Ai1mHuABo7
Katie Greene is Partnerships Director of Acts 435
Pictured above are advocates of Acts 435, including Archbishop John Sentamu, gathered at Bishopthorpe Palace in York