Content - Main Photo (?):   Gift Day 2021 (2)

Gift Day 2021

Each June we have a Gift Day, which is an opportunity to support ministry and mission outside our parish. In 2021 we supported a mix of international and local ministries to give an opportunity to respond financially to ministries close to HTR and to global issues and needs that are not necessarily featured in the news.

Four organisations were selected and we raised the magnificent total of £32,180, which was divided evenly to support the charities in specific ways:

  • International Justice Mission (IJM) - contributing to their May 2021 appeal towards bringing children to safety from trafficking and forced labour and restoring them through trauma-informed aftercare in Ghana
  • Latin Link - towards supporting Venezuelan refugees in Colombia
  • LVA Trust - towards developing a Therapeutic Mentoring Programme
  • Riverbank Trust - to help with the recruitment of a new Outreach Worker to join their team and launch two new hubs in Whitton and Ham this year with another two new Outreach Workers.

International Justice Mission (IJM)

IJM is a global organization that protects people in poverty from violence. They partner with local authorities in 24 programme offices in 14 countries to combat trafficking and slavery, violence against women and children, and police abuse of power.

The United Nations declared 2021 the Year for the Elimination of Child Labour. The increasing number of families in poverty, plus school closures, create the perfect conditions for child labour in its worst forms. Yet there is hope for children trapped in forced labour – even during a pandemic. In Ghana, for example, in 2020 IJM saw 71 children brought to safety from Lake Volta, 40 perpetrators arrested and three convicted. This is part of a deep systemic change. 

The money raised through Gift Day 2021 went towards  IJM’s May 2021 Appeal to raise funds to help them work to transform justice systems around the world, to stop the worst forms of child labour at source. As well as bringing children to safety from trafficking and forced labour and restoring them through trauma-informed aftercare, they’re working to make sure that systems are in place to stop any child from being exploited in the first place. Visit their website here.

Watch an inspirational message of hope from  Guvna B:
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Watch a video about some of the work of IJM:
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Latin Link

Latin Link is a “Community with a Calling”. Their vision is to see vibrant, Bible-believing Christian communities in every part of Latin America, impacting their neighbours, their societies, and the wider world. They work in partnership with churches to send and receive, individuals, families, and teams to and from Latin American communities to share the love of God.

In 2018, after serving in Peru for 13 years, Ian and Juliana Horne (and their two sons) relocated to Bogotá to work with the local Mennonite Church in reaching out to Venezuelan migrants. In recent years, Colombia has received more than 2 million Venezuelan migrants who are fleeing the difficult situation in their country. They come searching for employment and medical services, but most arrive without the documents required to work formally and end up begging or selling bags, food, etc on the streets.
 
The money raised through Gift Day 2021 went towards the Venezuelan Migrant Project. This is an integral mission initiative from the local church. Its goal is to cultivate faith and strengthen resilience in Venezuelan migrants, helping them to settle in Bogotá. The approach is very pastoral – listening to families, understanding their needs, and helping practically whilst encouraging them with God’s love. The initiative prioritises low-income families, especially those with young children or elderly relatives. They also operate three-month cycle of more intensive practical support with a small number of families when they provide nutritional support and help with medical expenses. They’ve joined with two local churches to jointly order food from a Food Bank. You can find out more on their website and  watch a video with more about Latin Link here:
 

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LVA Trust

 LVA is a charity that teaches RSE (relationship and sex education) in schools and other youth settings. Its core belief is that we are all loved, valued and able (LVA) and its ambition is to encourage positive self-esteem and healthy relationships.

Poor mental health has escalated to extremely distressing levels due to the pandemic. Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services’ (CAMHS’) waiting lists are getting longer and the NSPCC has reported a 33% rise in the need for these services. LVA recognised there will be a need for a more targeted approach to address the emotional wellbeing of our young people.  In response it has been working hard behind the scenes to develop a therapeutic mentoring programme,  a 12-week course that will be delivered in a 1:2:1 setting within schools across the borough by volunteers who will be fully trained, supervised and pastorally managed by a project coordinator.  The programme will follow its core theme that every child is loved, valued and able.

The money raised through Gift Day 2021 went directly towards expanding this programme and supporting the project coordinator, providing resources for the mentors and mentees and enabling them to reach more young people with these resources and bridge the gap between school pastoral teams and statutory services. You can find out more about them here.

Watch a presentation from one of the LVA team about its work:
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Riverbank Trust

Riverbank Trust is a Christian charity which seeks to love, support and befriend vulnerable single mums and their families in Richmond. its mission is to provide long term support and befriending to vulnerable families facing difficult situations, which includes providing practical and emotional support.

in 2020/21, Riverbank continued to be very busy and saw a spike in referrals as we  eased out of lockdown. This was to be expected and so in response to meet this need, it is looking to recruit a new Outreach Worker to join its team. It will also be launching two new hubs in Whitton and Ham this year with another two new Outreach Workers. It is here that it hopes to extend our schools work and community presence.

The money raised through Gift Day 2021 will help to support each of the 3 projects and their on-going costs to the ministry of Riverbank, which includes a very successful Kids Matter and Babies Matter parenting programme.  You can find out more from their website here and below you can watch a short video about Riverbank's plans for the coming year.

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