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This section of the site brings together a number of resources for churches in Wales seeking to engage with their communities under three headings: Gweini resources; working with “compassion ministries”, and training courses specially designed for churches.

Gweini Resources

Power of Ten by Gethin Russell-Jones (2013)

Power of Ten

New book shows how Christian collaborations are changing the face of Wales

This book tells the stories of ten partnerships between "compassion ministries" and local churches to serve their local communities. If you want to see your church reach out effectively to people living around it, this book will give you some great ideas to take that vision forward.

Read more and purchase your copy of 'Power of Ten' here...

Engaging Churches and Local Authorities

In May this year, the Gweini National Board and Local Gweini leaders met to share their experiences of working with Local Authorities (LAs). Despite the cut-backs, the mood of the meeting was upbeat, and here are some of the conclusions -  and ideas for taking action.

The good news is that LAs are now generally more willing to work with churches than in the recent past:

  • 'Religion or belief' is now one of the equality targets, along with race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and age. This offers ways to be involved in local compacts, local health boards, and many other official bodies“ LAs are keen to be seen to respect diversity goals;
  • LAs have less money to spend than in the past and are seeking out good partners wherever they can find them;
  • LAs often understand that the churches are major actors in social provision (and the Faith in Wales report helps convince them of that);
  • LAs often realise that they cannot hope to provide adequately for the social and spiritual needs of their clients“ at best they can cover the physical needs (see the Adopt a Care Home project in Swansea for just one example);
  • LAs increasingly understand that churches are capable of delivering social services without proselytising.

Read more about 'Engaging Churches and Local Authorities' ...

"Big Society" and the Church

Dan BoucherDr Dan Boucher, CARE's Director of Parliamentary Affairs, gave the keynote presentation, "Big Society and the Church", at the 2010 Gweini Autumn conference. Dan analyses where the concept of the "Big Society" has come from, where the Church have come, and the opportunities and challenges the Big Society now presents to the Church.

He links all this to the renaissance of the voluntary sector, supported, at least up to now, by the State. Dan ends with a discussion of some innovative ways in which churches can serve their communities.

The Talk and Powerpoint Slides from the Autumn 2010 Gweini Conference are now available here as a download:

iTunes Audio File Download the talk (iTunes m4a). [39.48 MB]

Adobe Acrobat PDF Dowload Download the notes (Adobe Acrobat PDF). [1.15 MB]

Download files as a Zipped Folder. You will need an UNZIP program to use this download Download the talk and the notes as a zip file. [40.44 MB]

Speak Up! Gweini 2009 Conference Keynote message

Speak UpAt the end of 2009, we held our Annual conference at Cornerstone Church in Swansea.

If you weren't able to come along to the conference, don't worry, all is not lost. You can still hear Paul Francis' keynote speech on a specially produced CD for just £3.

Alternatively you can download the talk here: Gweini_Speak_Up_Conference.m4a [87.91 MB]

To get your CD copy please contact John Richards by emailing: johnrichards@gweini.org.ukThis e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Meet the Neighbours Front CoverMeet the Neighbours

This Gweini resource book is about one of the best kept secrets in Wales. It recounts some of the amazing ways in which local churches have reached out into the Welsh community; Christians standing up for biblical truth and demonstrating Christ’s compassion in practical ways across the neighbourhoods of the Nation.

Purchase your copy of 'Meet the Neighbours' here...

 

“Compassion Ministries”

Prospects: How we can help you?

Prospects - Access to LifeProspects is a Christian organisation which enables and values people with learning disabilities to live their lives to the full.

Caring can be fun but exhausting. As your child reaches adolescence you are aware that school and other children services will come to an end which may add to your worries. Maybe you have organised all your adult child’s activities for years not knowing that you can have help. You may want some advice regarding church inclusion and bringing your child to faith.

Read more about Prospects...

Christians Against Poverty

CAP - Christians Against Poverty LogoChristians Against Poverty is a national debt counselling charity working through a network of centres based in local churches. CAP offers hope and a solution to anyone in debt through its unique, in-depth service.

CAP aims to show God's love in action by providing sustainable poverty relief through debt counselling, advice and practical help. The charity's unique, "hands on" approach empowers people to help themselves out of poverty and be released from the fear, oppression and worry generated by overwhelming debts. CAP provides sustainable poverty relief as their service teaches clients vital budgeting skills that will last a lifetime.

Read more about CAP...

Green Pastures Housing - Carrying the torch for Homeless people

Pastor Pete carrying the Olympic Torch

Pastor Pete carrying

the Olympic Torch

Green Pastures Housing started 13 years ago, when Pastor Pete (as he is affectionately known) and Vicki Woodley cashed in small annuities to make a deposit on 2 small flats to house 2 homeless people.

Bring that into the year 2012

Green Pastures have permanently housed over 1,100 people, lots of whom are now living independently from Green Pastures and free from the chains of their past.

Currently they permanently house 400 people through partners across the UK, including partners in Bridgend and Holywell in Wales, and have 240 properties.

Read more about Green Pastures...

UK Foodbanks

The Trussell Trust LogoTrussell Trust foodbanks provide a minimum of three days emergency food and support to people experiencing crisis in the UK, in partnership with with churches and communities.

All food is donated by the public and sorted by volunteers. Frontline care professionals such as doctors and social workers identify people in crisis and issue a food voucher. Clients receive three days of nutritionally balanced, non-perishable food in exchange for their food voucher. Foodbanks also make time to chat and to signpost clients to other helpful services.

The Trussell Trust is a Christian organisation motivated by Jesus' teaching on poverty and injustice. It operates according to Christian principles of compassion, honesty, integrity, openness, kindness and care of all people, regardless of backgrounds or beliefs. It believes in turning faith into practical action, living out God's love for the poor, serving people of all faith groups and none.

Read more about UK Foodbanks...

Street Pastors

Street Pastors LogoMaking a positive difference in the lives of young people

Street Pastors is an inter-denominational Church response to urban problems, engaging with people on the streets to care, listen and dialogue.

It was pioneered in London in January 2003 by Rev Les Isaac, Director of the Ascension Trust, and has seen some remarkable results, including drops in crime in areas where teams have been working. There are now over 100 teams around the United Kingdom.

Read more about 'Street Pastors'

Prison Fellowship: Sharing God’s love beyond the prison bars –
Adam’s story of hope

Prison FellowshipSchool days were certainly not the best days of my life.  At 16 I had no qualifications.  I was involved in an armed robbery when I was 18 and sentenced to 5 years in a young offenders’ institute.

I had dreams like everyone else but I didn’t have the education to go to college; the only thing I could do was sell drugs and I thought this was the way I could earn the money to buy my dream.

Read Adam's Story in full...

Courses for Churches

Square Mile

Square Mile - Building 4D ChurchesSquare Mile is an Evangelical Alliance initiative which aims to catalyse and equip Christians to take a truly integrated approach to mission, expressed in four dimensions:

Mercy - demonstrating God's compassion to the poor

Influence - being salt and light in the public life of the community

Life Discipleship - equipping Christians for missional living as workers & neighbours

Evangelism - faithful and relevant communication of the gospel

Read more about Square Mile ...

Discovery

DiscoveryDiscovery is a practical process from Tearfund designed to help your church become a transforming influence within your community.

Written by skilled practitioners who have worked extensively in inner-city communities, Discovery draws on Tearfund's experience of working with churches and community groups in the UK and overseas.

It aims to build on the strengths and aspirations of your church group to help them put their plans into action.

Read more about 'Discovery' here...

 

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