Tragically, modern slavery and human trafficking are very much present in the Black Country, as in every part of the country. Thankfully Christian groups are responding to the need by supporting people rescued from slavery and by working with the authorities to raise awareness of the issue. These groups include theAdavuProjectand PITS-STOP.
In 2015, 12,000 children in the Black Country were officially defined as ‘in need.’ Social Services are coming under increasing pressure as they address this problem. Across the Black Country, Christians and churches are already doing their best to serve struggling families, but the need is too great for individuals or small groups to tackle alone.
In an imaginative initiative, Love Black Country and Transforming Communities Together have created a consortium between themselves and four charities which focus in different ways on children and families – Home for Good, Safe Families for Children, TLG and YMCA Open Door – so that congregations in the Black Country are able to respond to the need by linking to just one consortium. The ground-breaking project invites each Black Country congregation to nominate a ‘Families Champion,’ who will act as the point of contact between the local church and the consortium of charities in all matters relating to children and families in need. More information about the initiative here.
Christian Aid recently launched its CHANGE THE STORY initiative to encourage Christians to write to local newspapers with positive stories about refugees and those who offer welcome and support to them. More information via this link.
Joy Dale has been appointed Dementia-Friendly Enabler for the Black Country part of the Church-of-England Diocese of Lichfield. In her role, Joy will aim to:
Deliver ‘Dementia-Friendly Church’ courses in four sessions, covering pastoral care, church services, church buildings and community networks
Deliver services in individual churches to raise awareness among the whole congregation, using the national ‘Dementia Friends’ initiative