Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough

Encouraging Christians in Wokingham Borough to Engage with their Communities

Tag: charity

Open Space Evening September 2016

This autumn Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough is hosting an  buy provigil london Open Space evening on Thursday 22nd September 2016 at Wokingham Town Hall.

This is an informal evening for churches and christian groups across Wokingham Borough to share their successes, find out about other local activities and encourage each other.

Organised and hosted by Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough, there will be music, drinks and nibbles and lots of opportunities to catch up with new and existing friends and colleagues.

Get the date in your diary now, you don’t want to miss this event.

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When: Thursday 22nd September 7.30 – 9.30pm
Where: Wokingham Town Hall Market Place, RG40 1AS
To reserve your place email mbarlow.fitc@gmail.com

Encourage Newsletter July 2016 Foodbanks

Welcome to your monthly http://crochetedbuddies.com/2016/07/03/bathtime-buddies/ Encourage newsletter from Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough.  This is your resource; to tell the community what you are doing and to find out what might be useful for people you are supporting. Share this on your website, within your own communications and across the social media networks AND keep sending us your good news.

Each month Encourage will have focus on one area of need being tackled in our community. This month… Foodbanks.

Every day people across Wokingham Borough go hungry; people on a low income or made redundant or ill; the young and the older, families and people on their own; people just like you. The economic crisis and government cuts have seen a big increase in the number of people needing help. Foodbanks provide …..

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Yeldall Manor

This is the second of a series of articles about christian charities across Wokingham Borough.  Why not help Yeldall Manor rehabilitate more people by sharing this across Facebook, on Twitter, on your website and with your networks by email.

Yeldall Manor is a rehabilitation centre, which for nearly 40 years has been helping men overcome their drug and alcohol addictions and return to society to live new lives; drug, alcohol and crime free.

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The Yeldall Manor First-Stage Programme is a rehabilitation programme, lasting 12-24 weeks, which combines counselling, group sessions and work in the house/grounds. At Yeldall Manor, residents find a place where the staff and other residents welcome and accept them. We try to be like a family and, like good parents, offer both love and discipline. Because the life of an addict is very chaotic, days in rehab are quite structured to help them bring order back into their lives.

Yeldall Manor is a Christian organisation, as we believe that the best means of achieving rehabilitation is through discipleship to Jesus Christ. However, residents do not have to be Christian to join the programme, and we never insist, or force such a commitment upon anyone.  Work is an important part of the programme – helping in the grounds, maintenance of the house or the kitchen. Some of our residents haven’t held down a job before, so they have to learn to take orders (sometimes from staff younger than themselves), to do jobs that they may not enjoy and to work as a team, as well as learning new skills (like horticulture, chain-sawing or cooking).

Counselling and group sessions provide the ‘therapy’ in the programme and help our residents face up to problems in their lives, which have often been ‘hidden’ by the drinking or drug-taking; many suffered childhood abuse or other traumas which need to be gently addressed.

Following successful completion of this programme, all residents have the opportunity to join the 18-24 week Yeldall Lodge Second-Stage Programme. This helps residents prepare for life outside Yeldall, with voluntary work, training courses and separate supported accommodation.  Residents live in one of two self-contained flats in the 10-bed Lodge, which is a separate building on the Yeldall Manor site. Throughout this programme residents learn to live more independently and are responsible for their own cooking, cleaning and washing.  Residents receive help with finding voluntary work placements, which they attend two days a week in order to gain further work experience and help prepare them for permanent work once they complete the programme. We also provide groups in areas such as relapse prevention, life skills, budgeting, relationship building, healthy eating and nutrition.

On completing the Second-Stage, residents have the opportunity to benefit from the Yeldall Third-Stage Programme, which can offer supported housing and/or voluntary work/training with our Grounds Maintenance Services as the men start to resettle back into the community. At this stage and beyond, our ex-residents receive on-going support from our Aftercare team.

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Rehabilitation is not easy, but it is effective. During our latest monitoring period, of those that completed both programmes between six and eighteen months ago, currently over 90% continue to live drug/alcohol-free and most are working in either a paid or a voluntary capacity.

 

source link How you can help Yeldall Manor

There are three main ways you can help Yedall Manor with their work; you can volunteer your time and talents, donate money and pray.  You can find all about these at their website.

Community Navigator Scheme Launch

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Supporting and Empowering People to Engage in Self-care, Independence and Well-being across the Borough of Wokingham

On Tuesday 12th July at Bradbury Centre in Wokingham and on Tuesday 19th July at St Nicolas Church in Earley Involve Wokingham will be launching the Community Navigator Scheme.

Community Navigators are local volunteers who help people find their way to activities, services or organisations which they would enjoy, find useful or benefit from within the local community. This is an information giving and signposting project.

The Community Navigator scheme is for anyone of any age from the Wokingham Borough. You may be a young parent looking for peer support and different activities in your area, you may be a working age individual wanting to find out about local sports or music clubs and groups or you could be an elderly person looking to find support with managing a health condition or looking for new social networks to join. See the example scenario below.  Navigators are recruited, trained and supported by a volunteer co-ordinator at involve and are based at GP surgeries and community venues across the Borough of Wokingham.

People can access the service through a referral. This may be from a GP, social worker, family member or a self-referral. A time slot is booked with a Navigator who will explore a range of options in the community for the individual to engage with and will encourage them to attend groups, activities and services that can help them meet their needs.  Navigators are not counsellors or experts at dealing with particular issues and they are not going to solve a person’s problems for them – but they will help and guide the individual to discover “what’s on in their community”.

These launch events are for everyone who might be interested in volunteering as community navigators as well as support workers and organisations who will be happy to accept referrals through the scheme.

Please come along to one of the launch events and spread the news through your community, let’s make sure this scheme can help as many people as possible across Wokingham Borough.

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Just Around the Corner (JAC)

This is the first of a series of articles about christian charities across Wokingham Borough.  Why not help JAC become better known by sharing this across Facebook, on Twitter, on your website and with your networks by email.

Just Around the Corner (JAC) was founded in 1998 and the organisation works with disadvantaged young people to encourage them to make positive choices. Last year JAC, as a whole, delivered 2039 sessions to 11,954 young people.  Their incredible team of volunteers gave 8792 volunteer hours.  The JAC PAD in Wokingham town centre has worked with young people and adults suffering with anxiety, addiction and other problems, offering a drop in service and a market stall to help them socialise; this is being changed as Wokingham is developed.   They also have a community shop for those that are work ready to gain retail experience in a supported environment.  The final aspect of their work is on the streets to build relationships with young people as well as running emotional literacy groups in Schools.  Below are details JAC have provided about the different services.

Rehoboth Activity centre and stables
At our multi activity centre and stables we do intense therapeutic work with young people through Equine Assisted Learning , horticulture, pottery, arts & crafts & land management. Young people are referred as they are struggling in mainstream education or not accessing education at all. The reasons that they are referred for are varied and could be trauma, sexual and / or domestic abuse, self-harm, eating disorders, low self-esteem, post adoption issues, attachment disorders, emotional, social or behavioural issues etc. Some of our young people are unable to cope with mainstream Education and are with us full time, as it is the only place where they will engage and feel safe. Once they have finished the EAL programme – many young people continue to volunteer with us on supported placements and some complete accredited training courses with us (NVQ’s, Berkshire award, etc.)

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Detached work
JAC have been involved in several community events and will be involved in re-developing some community land for young people under the A329 M – the suggestions have been to turn the area in to a parkour (free running area) skate park or BMX – or all three!

Schools work
JAC are still working hard in Maiden Erlegh, mentoring and running Schools groups

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We are losing the JACPAD and the JAC SHOP in Wokingham Town Centre because of the redevelopment but for now we are still mentoring, training and developing young people through the Market Stall and the shop. Several young people have now gained employment and we are looking forward to seeing more lives changed before December.

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Rehoboth
This year we have been setting up Education for those young people that are with us almost full time. We have a fully qualified teacher who is working on functional skills in English and Maths with them and 3 of them sat an exam last week!  Some of them are also doing an NVQ in Horse care. For young people who have disengaged from Education or for whom main stream and other special school placements haven’t worked – it is incredible to see them achieving so much at JAC that will set them up for their future. 2 of our young people both got distinctions in their last NVQ unit on horse care.  JAC have now also raised enough funds to buy a horse box which will take the equine work to a new level.

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JAC therapeutic programme
This has expanded and we are now offering: pottery, arts and crafts, welding, horticulture, small animals, goats, donkeys, horses, bees and much more.

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How you can help JAC
There are three main ways you can help JAC with their work; you can volunteer your time and talents, donate money and pray.

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1If you would like to receive this monthly prayer diary or get involved in any way then please email info@jacoutreach.org

And please support their Family Fun DAY on the 9th July – Saturday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
With pony rides, meet the goats and donkeys, horse games, quiz, stalls, decorating horse shoes, raffle, refreshments and BBQ.

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Earley and East Reading Churches at East Reading Festival

Last weekend Churches Together in Earley and East Reading (CTEER) came together to provide a church zone at the East Reading Festival in Palmer Park.  The festival is “a celebration of the diversity of the local community and aims to strengthen the connections between the people and organisations of the area.”  There were over 50 stalls and 3 performance stages at the free festival and the church zone was a key part of the festival which welcomed over 5000 visitors.

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A wide range of churches worked together at the East Reading Festival including Vineyard with the Healing on the Streets team, Wycliffe, Park United Reformed Church, Anderson Baptist Church including the Nepali congregation, Earley Christian Fellowship, Brookside, St Nicolas Church, Wesley Methodist and CAP (Christians against Poverty).  Here are some of the photos celebrating the presence, prayer and praise that blessed the festival and the community.

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The puppets came along from Wycliffe

 

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The Boys Brigade organised a game of football

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There was worship by the Nepalese church

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Home For Good and Christian Community Action were in attendance raising awareness of their charities

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Messy Church was visited by many families and there was a tent available for specific prayer

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Healing on the Streets were praying over anyone who wanted to be blessed with it

 

We are called to be in the world but not of the world; the presence of the churches together at East Reading Festival showed this in all it’s fullness.  We look forward to coming along again next year.

With thanks to Steve Blunden for the wonderful photos.

Encourage Newsletter June 2016 Summer Holidays

Welcome to your monthly Encourage newsletter from Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough.  This is your resource; to tell the community what you are doing and to find out what might be useful for people you are supporting. Share this on your website, within your own communications and across the social media networks AND keep sending us your good news.

Each month Encourage will have focus on one area of need being tackled in our community. This month… Summer Holidays.

The summer holidays are approaching and we know that this is a time of both challenge and opportunity.  It is a challenge for parents who have to balance life, work and children; a challenge for grandparents who might be doing more childcare than normal and a challenge for the rest of the community who might see their normal activities stop for many week.

But we are all about opportunities to meet the needs of kids, parents, grandparents and everyone else in our communities; so here is a selection of what is going on through July and August this year……

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Refugee Week 2016 in Wokingham Borough

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20th to 26th June 2016 is Refugee Week and today we are highlighting some of the many different events which have been taking place across Wokingham Borough and the nearby areas.  The theme of this years Refugee Week is “Welcome” celebrating the welcome shown to refugees and asylum seekers in the UK, and seek to encourage and inspire communities to continue to welcome new arrivals in the weeks, months and years to come.

The Refugee Week website writes about why “welcome” has been chosen as the theme this year
During the second half of 2015, the ‘refugee crisis’ was accompanied by incredible acts of welcome by communities and individuals across the UK and Europe.  Some were getting involved in refugee rights for the very first time, while others were continuing the volunteering and campaigning they are committed to all year round, year on year.

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Wokingham Methodist Church organised a day of prayer and reflection with resources around the theme “Different pasts, Shared futures” on Saturday 16th July.

St Nicolas Earley collected items including towels, toiletries and children’s clothes which were made into Care Packs for expectant mothers, babies and families as part of the Samara’s Aid Appeal.  The cost of delivery to the refugees in the Middle East is being funded through the sales of Ice Cream Sundaes on Sunday 3rd July.

Palmer Park United Reformed Church held a day Refugee Week Cultural Event on Sunday 26th June including prayer stations, international foods and music and a chance to get to know different cultures.

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Clare Hooper, from Wokingham Baptist Church is part of the steering group working with Wokingham Borough Council to work out how refugees can be supported locally and says that the process is moving along well with a suitable house being sought in the borough.  A summary of how this works is provided below by St John the Baptist Church in Crowthorne

In December 2015 a meeting of Wokingham District Council was chaired by Simon Price and subsequently addressed by: Daniel Hobbs from the Home Office, Deputy Head of the Government’s Resettlement Programme; Ray Millard, the partnership manager S.E. Strategic Partnership for Migration; Nick Hagbourne – Reading Refugee Support Group; and Zaimal Koroma – Reading Red Cross. They described their experiences in Reading. The Government has pledged to take in 20,000 refugees from the United Camps in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan. Life there is very basic although the Government has already spent billions in aid there.

Of the 20,000 promised, the first 200 came in September. It was expected that 1,000 would be resettled before Christmas. Daniel Hobbs is in charge of this resettlement programme together with the help of “a team made up of local government representatives”. Of the numbers seeking resettlement there were two levels of screening including medical screening done, first in the camps and again on reaching the U.K .but those selected would match up to the following criteria: women with children on their on their own; survivors of torture; those with particular medical needs; those with problems of sexual identity.

Each local authority is being asked to house five families. Five-bedroomed houses are being sought for which the rent and maintenance would be paid over a five-year period. Support from the Overseas Development Aid would be provided. After five years the resettled family can return or apply for resettlement. A case worker and translator would accompany each party of refugees. For practical reasons the authority is hoping to find accommodation within reasonable distance of work which does present difficulties. It is probable that Wokingham’s refugees will probably be placed in the Woodley/Earley area.

You can also read this report by The Wokingham Paper which was written about this important process.

 

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In neighbouring Reading the Reading Refugee Support Group is hosting the bid to become a Town of Sanctuary for Refugees.  RRSG help refugees and asylum-seekers overcome the many challenges they face and help them to be independent, to access their rights and to encourage their self-esteem and confidence.  This week they hosted, at Reading Film Theatre, Nicky’s Family film which tells the nearly forgotten story of Nicholas Winton, an Englishman who organized the rescue of 669 Czech and Slovak children just before the outbreak of World War II.  This was followed by a Panel Discussion.

Last, but certainly not least, a Wokingham Borough resident, Rachel Bradley, has continued to inspire and encourage gossip girls (and guys) across Wokingham to donate items needed by refugees in The Jungle in Calais through the Gossip Girls in Action Facebook Group.  This group has over 1100 members who have already delivered clothing to refugees and are currently collecting food to be delivered at the same time as the colouring books and stationary items on the trip next month.  Please join this group if you would like to donate the following items:

Tuna
Coffee
Tea bags
Salt
Sugar
Tinned pulses/beans (any variety other than baked)
Rice
Tinned tomatoes
Vegetable Oil

 

These are just a selection of the collections, prayers and discussions happening across Wokingham Borough to support refugees, if you know of something else then please comment to spread the word about the good news.

 

 

 

Home for Good: how you can help

On Sunday 5th June 2016  Woodley Churches Together invited Bethany Hare of Home for Good Reading and Wokingham to speak at Praise in the Park.  Rather than summarise her inspirational talk, we have decided to share it in it’s entirety.

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Hi my name is Bethany Hare, I am the project worker for Home for Good Reading and Wokingham.  For those of you who don’t know Home for Good is a christian charity, we are raising awareness of the need for local foster and adoptive parents we want to find a home for every child who needs one and we believe that the Church can make a difference. Home for Good are also encouraging Church’s to offer support to foster carers, adopters and their children.
I want to start by asking you three questions which I want you think about throughout my talk

Do you believe God Loves you?

Do you believe he has a plan for you?

And how do you share God’s love with others?’
My talk today is going to be based on Jeremiah 29 verse 11 ‘for I know the plans I have for you, declares the lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.’
Now I don’t know about you but there have been several occasions in my life when I have doubted and questioned this. I would love to be able to turn around and say yes throughout my life I have been certain God loves me and has a plan for me, plans for welfare… however I would be lying. When I am going through difficult times, I have turn to God and said ‘right ok…where are you? Now would be the perfect time for you to share my plan with me…’ It got me thinking that If I struggle to come to terms with this as a Christian then imagine how the vulnerable children in our society would react to the idea that God loves them and has a plan for them. The children who are not able to live with their own family and are living in uncertainty, who are waiting for a family, a place they can have stability. The fact God has a plan for them and does not want to harm them would be very difficult to grasp unless the love of God is demonstrated too them through others.
A foster carer recently shared with us that when things seem particularly demanding These words of Joni Earekson Tada inspire her in her fostering.  ‘But God didn’t send a greeting card to show His love, He came Himself. He didn’t just tell us He loved us, He gave up His own life on our behalf. You can talk and sing about love until the cows come home. But at the end of the day, real love means sacrifice.’

I have been a social worker for almost 7 years now and although there are challenges and difficulties I enjoy it. 3 years ago I got baptised and a lady came up to me and said to me ‘God has given me a picture for you. It’s a picture of stepping stones. God wants you to know he has laid a path for you. You don’t need to be afraid he has cleared the way.’ Ironically a few months later I was off work due to personal reasons unsure if I could ever face being a social worker again. I doubted what I was supposed to do and what my plan was…this was the time I was referring to earlier about shouting to God and asking him to shed some light. I decided to go back to social worker however began working supporting and assessing adopters and foster carers. I was happy in my role and had no plans to move. At the same time several members of my church including the youth workers had it on their heart to set up a support group for foster carers and adopters. We had a meeting to discuss this and at the end we prayed. Both the youth workers said to me they felt I should contact Home for Good and see if they have any jobs. Little did they know the job description for Reading and Wokingham Project worker was just being finalised. I applied for the role and on a Wednesday I found out I had an interview, on the Thursday I found out I was going to be made redundant at my current work place and on the Friday I found out I had the job for Home for Good.
This is my testimony of God’s love for me and his plan. Although I still go through difficulties and have no doubt I will continue to face struggles I hold on to God’s plan for me and declare that God will pull me through.

I am sure there are many others who are able to share how God has showed his love for you and have amazing testimonies and others who would say I haven’t experienced that. God has shown his love for us time and time again although sometimes when things are difficult it is hard to remember this. But it is written down for us as a constant reminder.

The bible is the ultimate love story…it is about God’s love for each of us.  A God who is our father.  He has adopted us and has an amazing plan for us. Too often adoption is seen as a negative however it is positive. We have been chosen by our father. We are not a mistake, we are loved and cherished.

Father’s Love Letter is a compilation of Bible verses from both the Old & New Testaments that are presented in the form of a love letter from God to you.
My Child…You may not know me, but I know everything about you. (Psalm 139:1) I know when you sit down and when you rise up. (Psalm 139:2) I am familiar with all your ways. (Psalm 139:3) Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. (Matthew 10:29-31) For you were made in my image. (Genesis 1:27) In me you live and move and have your being. (Acts 17:28) For you are my offspring. (Acts 17:28) I knew you even before you were conceived. (Jeremiah 1:4-5) I chose you when I planned creation. (Ephesians 1:11-12) You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book. (Psalm 139:15-16) I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live. (Acts 17:26) You are fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14) I knit you together in your mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13) And brought you forth on the day you were born. (Psalm 71:6) I have been misrepresented by those who don’t know me. (John 8:41-44) I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love. (1 John 4:16) And it is my desire to lavish my love on you. (1 John 3:1) Simply because you are my child and I am your Father. (1 John 3:1) I offer you more than your earthly father ever could. (Matthew 7:11) For I am the perfect Father. (Matthew 5:48) Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand. (James 1:17) For I am your provider and I meet all your needs. (Matthew 6:31-33) My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) Because I love you with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3) My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. (Psalms 139:17-18) And I rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17) I will never stop doing good to you. (Jeremiah 32:40) For you are my treasured possession. (Exodus 19:5) I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul. (Jeremiah 32:41) And I want to show you great and marvelous things. (Jeremiah 33:3) If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me. (Deuteronomy 4:29) Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4) For it is I who gave you those desires. (Philippians 2:13) I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) For I am your greatest encourager. (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17) I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you. (Psalm 34:18) As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart. (Isaiah 40:11) One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes. (Revelation 21:3-4) And I’ll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth. (Revelation 21:3-4) I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus. (John 17:23) For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed. (John 17:26) He is the exact representation of my being. (Hebrews 1:3) He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you. (Romans 8:31) And to tell you that I am not counting your sins. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you. (1 John 4:10) I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love. (Romans 8:31-32) If you receive the gift of my son, Jesus, you receive me. (1 John 2:23) And nothing will ever separate you from my love again. (Romans 8:38-39) Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen. (Luke 15:7) I have always been Father and will always be Father. (Ephesians 3:14-15) My question is…will you be my child? (John 1:12-13) I am waiting for you. (Luke 15:11-32) love your dad almighty God

Do you believe God Loves you?

Do you believe he has a plan for you?

Do you share God’s love with others?
God loves us and if we believe this it is our job to show God’s love to others in our society through acceptance, kindness, love and respect.
God is our ultimate father and is well pleased with us. I want you to think about what God’s plan is for you? Can you share his love in your local community or through your work?

As part of Home for Good what we want to do is reflect God’s love to our vulnerable children. It is amazing how the simplicity of love; acceptance is to children who have never experienced it before.
In Reading we have pledge to find 50 homes for local children and in Wokingham we have pledged to find 2o homes for the local children in care. These sound like a lot however, when you consider how many churches we have across Reading and Wokingham….it is not that much.
There are different ways you can support home for good
Can you help home for good come to your church to promote fostering and adoption?
Can you support those in your community who are already fostering or have adopted?
Could you consider fostering or adopting a child?
If you would like to find out more please contact Bethany Hare, Reading and Wokingham home for good Project worker.

It may not be Home for Good that God has placed on your heart but I would love you to come away from today thinking about What has God placed on your heart? What is your plan?
I want to finish by reading Jeremiah 29 verse 11 again and declaring it over all of you. ‘for I know the plans I have for you, declares the lord, plans to prosper you and NOT to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’

 

Below is a video of the last segment of Bethany’s talk; we hope this inspires you to pray about what God might have put on your heart and to share with your friends and neighbours.

Bethany Hare, Home for Good at Praise in the Park Woodley 2016