At St. Julians Baptist Church we recognise that involvement with charities working all around the world is very much a part of God’s work for us. We are committed to supporting essential development and relief work as we are able and have worked with a diversity of organisations over the years.
Here’s a blog post from Andy Long’s blog site about our amazing Christian Aid Week efforts in 2015
The Red Bucket
A Story Of How A Small Church Became Inspired By Christian Aid
St Julians Baptist Church in Newport has a long-standing relationship with Christian Aid. For many years members of the church have been supporting campaigns, following the charity’s work across the globe and, of course, getting involved in Christian Aid week.
When I rejoined my childhood church around 2005 they were still running the traditional door-to-door collections and holding a special offering on Christian Aid Sunday. It was a regular annual event, but I could see that it had become something of a chore and really needed a radical shake-up.
In that first year, acting as the church’s justice, aid & mission representative, I decided that we would not be doing a door-to-door collection, at the time this was a controversial decision, but I could see that it was a lot of work for quite a small return. It had become difficult to coordinate, we are based on quite a large housing estate and manpower was short. Instead I opted to promote a series of events organized by groups within the church. Each group could choose their own event and invite the community along.
That year we ran our first Quiz-Aid, something that we have repeated every year since and which has become the highlight of Christian Aid Week. Additionally we had a sponsored walk, a car wash, a concert and the usual coffee mornings and cake sales. The end of the week saw us running a special Sunday Service dedicated to Christian Aid Week. We prayed at the prayer stations, we watched the films, we heard the message and a small red plastic bucket filled up with donation envelopes and the proceeds from our events.
In previous years the Christian Aid week donations sent off had averaged around £200. In that first event-led year the red bucket was filled with £1200. This radical change was working, Christian Aid Week was inspiring people to get involved, share in the stories and find new and exciting fundraising activities.
We have continued this event led programme ever since. Every year the events are different, but we always have a quiz. We’ve had musical events ranging from choral concerts to open mic nights, One of our members grows and sells plants from seeds so all of our gardens are looking gorgeous. We’ve had line dancing, a tea dance, some crazy youth events and there is always cake, oh, so much cake!
Christian Aid Week has retained its momentum, it continues to inspire people in so many ways, and it’s wonderful to see the positive change that Christian Aid brings around the globe. I kept that red bucket and I use it every year, it reminds me how simple ideas can challenge us to reach new heights.
As we approached this year’s run of events I began, as I do every year, to panic a bit, would there be enough things happening this year to raise a good sum of money? Would people still be inspired and enthused? Then, on April 25 2015, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 struck Nepal and we were horrified at the resulting devastation.
Like most churches we operate a distress fund in order to be able to send funds quickly in times of disaster, but people in the church were already gearing up for Christian Aid Week. Would they want to give to Nepal when they were already supporting Ethiopia?
My wife, Jackie, had already decided to organise one of the events this year, it was to be a short sponsored walk along the banks of the local canal at Goytre Wharf. We decided that it was appropriate to dedicate the funds raised from this walk to Christian Aid’s Nepal appeal, rather than to the Christian Aid Week appeal. This approach would mean that people could choose how to direct their giving, a sensible and straightforward idea to address both needs.
A small group of people put their names down to take part in the walk and sponsor forms went home with them. Something special started to happen. It seemed that this small group of people walking a short distance had moved people somehow and the sponsorship started to roll in. The school where Jackie works soon filled up one of the forms and each of the participants found sponsors in their own homes or workplaces. We had expected to raise maybe £200; in fact we cleared £700, a fantastic result.
Coincidentally, in the week following the walk, the children in Jackie’s school were having a ‘Sporting Heroes’ day. They were allowed to come to school dressed as their sporting hero and could tell the story of their hero’s achievements. Two little girls said they wanted to come dressed as Mrs. Long; she was their sporting hero because she walked for Nepal.
It’s a privilege to be a part of the relief effort in Nepal, but surely this approach would have an effect on the giving for Christian Aid Week’s efforts in Ethiopia? We were asking people to decide where there money should go, would they direct it all to Nepal or Ethiopia or would they split it? I expected that the funds raised for Christian Aid Week itself would be less than in previous years.
Wrong! On Sunday May 17th we held our Christian Aid Service. We prayed at the prayer stations, we watched the films, we heard the message, I preached! (It takes some grace to listen to that!). And once again a small red plastic bucket filled up with donation envelopes and monies raised by the different events.
This year our Christian Aid Week fundraising currently stands at just over £1150, with a little more still to come in. That stands aside from the £700 raised for Nepal. A record-breaking year for St Julians Baptist Church. Well done people. What shall we do next year?
Nominated Charities 2014-15
Each year we nominate a small number of charities to support financially and durting the year we introduce the work of those charities to the members of the church so that they can become aware of the work that is being done and have the opportunity to get personally involved if they wish to do so.
Stop The Traffik
We are a global movement of activists around the world who passionately give their time and energy to build resilient communities and prevent human trafficking.
We are a campaigning organisation that seeks to build a traffik-free world!
WE PREVENT TRAFFICKING BY:
- Equipping people to understand what trafficking is, how it affects them and what they can do about it. We gather and analyse information from communities about how and where trafficking is happening.
- Campaigning for change!
- Building a global movement
Individuals, communities, organisations, front-line professionals, faith groups, businesses, schools and charities are all part of STOP THE TRAFFIK.
Since 2006 we have been building a global movement. From Australia, to Brazil. From the Netherlands, to Canada. From downtown New York to the most remote communities in India, together we are taking action to STOP THE TRAFFIK!
When a community lifts itself out of poverty, everything changes. Poverty does more than exhaust, starve, trap and kill people. It destroys their sense of worth, limits their horizons, robs people of the chance to reach their full potential. Tearfund’s call is to follow Jesus where the need is greatest. We long for new life and a new sense of worth for people. We do whatever it takes to end poverty and rebuild poor communities. We work through local churches, because they’re Jesus’ body on earth, ready to care for the whole person – and the whole community – inside and out.
We provide food and furniture for people in need throughout the old county of Gwent and beyond.
We work with Social Service Departments, Support Organisations, Churches and Schools….
……. and with anyone who may come to us.
You can get hold of us at 276-278, Cromwell Road, Newport. NP19 0HT
South Wales Churches Refugee Network
South Wales Churches’ Refugee Network started in 2008 out of a need to network the growing number of churches in South Wales involved in helping people seeking sanctuary and refuge. Services included drop-ins, providing friendship and accommodation, supporting asylum seekers in court and helping with practical needs. We do our best to ensure that the churches’ contribution in the sector is relevant and of quality. Together with Oasis Cardiff, we provide a networking lunch twice a year for all those working in the sector.
Each year during May we take part in Christian Aid Week. We organise a week (or more) of special events to raise money for, and promote awareness of, the work of Christian Aid around the world. Past events have included, quizzes, concerts, sponsored walks, car washes, lunches and coffee afternoons, etc.
The week culminates with a special Christian Aid service, during which we learn more about the specific causes being sponsored that year and take part in specific prayer and meditation for those causes.
In 2014 the theme was “Bite Back At Hunger” and our Christian Aid Service was held on May 26th. We had a fantastic response from all our supporters this year and we raised a total of £1,121.74. Thanks to all involved for their efforts and continued support. A special mention this year should go the very young children in the church who held a sponsored silence and a sponsored toddle, these events were the biggest fundraiser this year, raising £222.
Home Mission is all about helping Baptist churches and individuals to reach their mission potential and bring the love of God to their communities
Just imagine…helping to unlock the potential of small churches with big visions
Just imagine…helping to keep God’s light shining in our cities
Just imagine…helping churches to discover mission in a new way
Just imagine…helping to transform the lives of young people
This happens through grants which are given to support a variety of ministries in and through Baptist churches across the country. Grants are also given to support chaplains and others who work outside the walls of the church. But Home Mission also enables all our churches and ministers to be supported and helped through the work of the Regional Associations and the staff who work at the National Resource Centre in Didcot.