Our 2021 charity allocations explained
St Peter’s aims to make charitable funding commitments (using the 10 per cent of annual giving allocated for this purpose) for three years at a time, to allow the charities we support to plan. Allocations are reviewed each year, to ensure that our money is spent in line with our wishes.
IN RECENT years we have donated to four overseas charities and five UK ones. But, with a decline in parish income, there was a concern that resources could be spread too thinly. At the March PCC meeting we therefore proposed that, from this year, the number of charities be reduced slightly, so that those remaining could receive a meaningful sum.
Of the four overseas charities we have been supporting, Solar-Aid seemed most able to manage without help from us — although its work, providing solar lights to rural communities across Africa, remains inspired and revolutionary. Do visit https://solar-aid.org to see the transformative work the charity has been doing since we picked it for our Harvest Project in 2013.
We felt it essential to continue supporting Syria Relief, the charity set up in 2011 by Manchester-based doctors of Syrian heritage in response to the outbreak of civil war — a conflict that has now been raging for ten years. Using local contacts, the charity carries out vital work on the ground in that war-ravaged country, where government forces have routinely bombed both hospitals and schools. Some sobering statistics: 80 per cent of the population now live in poverty, 13 million have fled their homes, and 6.3 million are now refugees. Some 2.5 million children have stopped all learning — something Syria Relief, with our help, is trying to rectify. (Pictured: four of the 4,500 children now taught in mobile learning centres and Syria Relief-run schools in Northern Syria.)
The project we are supporting through Afrinspire also looks after refugees, in this case families fleeing conflict in South Sudan for Northern Uganda, where with our help Afrinspire is helping the youngest children in Belameling Refugee Settlement. Our contributions are used to purchase vital school materials, including text books and uniforms.
Our CMS partners in South Asia continue their mission work in tough circumstances, especially during the past year. We will invite them to speak to us on their next furlough home—likely now to be a year away.
In the UK, we continue our support for St Paul’s church in Salford and for St Mary’s in Partington, one of the poorest parishes in our Diocese. The Boaz Trust in Manchester continues its valuable work, supporting destitute asylum seekers with shelter, mentoring and spiritual support. The Counselling & Family Centre in Altrincham is doing important work with individuals and families in difficulty or distress, a need that is particularly acute at this time. We have reallocated funds from the Cottage in Hale, which has sadly closed.
Christian Aid Week, 10 to 16 May
FOR the past 12 months, world affairs and our daily lives have been ruled by the coronavirus pandemic, whilst the climate crisis rages on. Our global neighbours in Kenya continue to battle the same cycle of climate chaos that dominated their lives a year ago, as they veer from severe drought to flooding. Too much rain can be just as damaging as too little, when crops are damaged, inadequate dams are washed away and precious water lost.
This year’s Christian Aid Week project is the same as last year’s: to help those in Kenya who cannot escape climate change to withstand that change by building better earth dams to harvest and preserve water, sowing drought-tolerant crops and demanding climate justice on their behalf.
Look out for further news in forthcoming parish newsletters on how we can continue to make a difference for Christian Aid this year.
For online donations please visit www.christianaid.org.uk
Lockdown Lent Project: How the £5,000 we’ve raised is helping
Ruth Lancey, Managing Director at the Hope Centre in Partington writes:
AT A time when so many churches and charities are struggling, to know there are people willing to give so much to help others is incredibly moving.
We have just had two more families reaching out for support [in addition to the 100 families already receiving weekly food parcels]. Both have been struggling but were reluctant to come forward until now. In one case their PIP (Personal Independence Payment) review, which was started last year, is still ongoing, meaning a large cut in benefits; in another case the family breadwinner is self-employed and his work has dried up.
Once again, thank you for your continued support.
To download a PDF of the March 2021 MiA Newsletter, click here.