AWAY GIVING SUNDAY for 2015 is on JUNE 21st
Each year St Mary’s gives a proportion of its income to charities. This year the focus charity, receiving £1500, is The Joliba Trust proposed by Angela Toyne who, instead of gifts for her 60th birthday, asked family and friends to donate money for a well in Mali.
Angela has written about the organisation below.
Very few of you will have heard of The Joliba Trust before, but it is a small charity which works in the rural areas of central Mali, a large land-locked country in West Africa. Mali is the size of France and Spain combined, but only has a population of about 4 million and the population density is merely 12 per square kilometer. It is one of the poorest countries in the world and its biggest challenges are poverty, malnutrition, inadequate hygiene and lack of water and sanitation. Over 50% of the population live below the international poverty line of $1.25 per day. The country could not be more different from the UK. For example, only 2% have internet access, 85% of the rural population have no access to sanitation, 28% of children under 5 are underweight, and there is on average only 8 doctors for 100,000 population (with few if any in the rural areas). The climate is also very different from ours: the temperature can get as high as 50C and in the same areas can drop to 5C, and there is little rain. The way of life is such that it differs little from that described in the Gospels.
So what does the Joliba Trust do? It has worked with rural people in the country since 1984 and established the Trust in 1992. They support self-help projects in over 200 villages and these are managed by 9 local staff in 2 field offices. They have extremely low administrative costs and 97% of donations go directly to field projects.
They have a variety of projects with the main focus on helping women and carrying out environmental work to sustain rural livelihoods. This involves building wells (only 44% at the moment have close access to a well); training in maternal health, nutrition and midwifery; literacy training; land and natural resource management to sustain livelihoods and improve food security in a changing climate, tree planting, pasture regeneration, and dune stabilisation.
The grant from St Mary’s will make a real difference to so many very poor people in a forgotten part of the world. Come and hear a bit more about it at the 11am service on June 21st. In the meantime you can find out more on their website: www.jolibatrust.org.uk
We have 3 subsidiary charities, receiving £250 or £500, described below:
CHOICES Islington www.choicesislington.org proposed by Ellie Cooke who is a volunteer with The Mum’s Community Group and Befriending Service
Choices is a Christian-based organization that offers independent, non-directive support to enable those facing an unplanned pregnancy to make their own informed choices or for those with post abortion concerns to have a safe place to talk things through. They offer a sex and relationships project to young people in local schools which promotes self respect and positive relationship values. They also run women’s outreach and counseling programmes in Holloway Prison.
The Community Group started in King’s Cross in September 2013 and has grown dramatically over the last year. It creates a space for mums in the area (many coming from Choices) who may be considered vulnerable, having faced domestic abuse, poverty or just tough life circumstances. During the group we run holistic, creative and educational sessions for the mothers – including parenting courses and sewing classes. We also have tea and snacks together, building relationships and friendships. Alongside all the services above they have started a Boutique providing clothes and equipment to parents in need.
FLYING SCHOLARSHIPS FOR DISABLED PEOPLE www.fsfdp.org.uk proposed by Geoff Brindle who is a trustee
FSDP provides a one-in-a-lifetime challenge for disabled people to help them realise their abilities through the medium of learning to fly. It was inaugurated in 1983 after the death of Sir Douglas Bader who, after losing both his legs in a flying accident, went on to achieve fame in World War II as a fighter pilot and a gifted leader of men. Since then nearly 400 disabled people have been awarded scholarships. Several have been paraplegic and others disabled as a result, for example, of cerebral palsy, loss of limbs, rheumatoid arthritis, MS, ME and spina bifida. Out of the 120 applications received each year; 25 are invited to RAF Cranwell for selection; and 10-13 scholarships awarded. The experience rebuilds confidence and self-esteem – the testimonies on the website speak for themselves.
MOOT www.moot.uk.net proposed by Simon Butler because St Mary’s was approached, along with a number of other ‘inclusive’ parishes, for some short-term funding by Moot
Moot was founded 5 years ago and is now based at St Mary Aldermary in the City of London. Effectively it is a church community for people who don’t do church, who consider themselves to be spiritual though not religious. It seeks to build on monastic principles to enable people to discover their faith in the daily round, through a personal rule of life. It is widely admired for its ground-breaking work in Central London and its influence has become important in encouraging liberal and catholic parishes to explore patterns of mission and evangelism more traditionally associated with evangelical churches.
Moot receives no direct funding from the Church of England. The funding is needed for 2 purposes:
- To create a hub, an arts-as-mission lounge – which will eventually become self-funding – as a hub for mission and evangelism to un-churched people living or working in the City.
- To implement a programme of mission-focused events for the un- and de-churched.
St Mary’s has links with Moot. Its priest, Ian Mobsby, who owns a flat in Battersea has worshipped with us occasionally when on leave. And our former curate, Adam Boulter, was a priest associate of Moot.