Rebuilding Communities: a focus on mental health and wellbeing for Hope Beyond 2.0
11 NOV 2020
The second wave of Allchurches’ Hope Beyond funding has been awarded to 111 churches and Christian charities across the UK, with cheques totalling £809,690. The projects to benefit will tackle three key areas of need in communities in response to COVID-19 - isolation and loneliness, digital resilience and mental health and wellbeing.
As England enters another period of lockdown, and normal life seems a distant dream for everyone in the UK, projects addressing mental health and wellbeing will be more vital than ever, as the need for emotional support continues to rise with the uncertainty and challenges presented by the pandemic.
We’re proud to share some examples of organisations we’re funding to build their communities up and reach out with emotional and spiritual support in the toughest of times…
Great Commission Church, Barking, Essex
£10,000 funding from Allchurches will support Great Commission Church to create an app where people can share their lockdown stories and feelings, in confidence, with understanding volunteers; giving the community a safe space where they can unload and speak freely. The grant will also help the church to organise music and dance therapy sessions where local people can release their emotional stress and start to enjoy life again!
Uberheroes is an inspiring mental health programme, which uses comic heroes and creativity as a route to engage children in conversations about mental health. Hope4Life is adapting its well established programme to connect with schools via video platforms by employing staff specifically from a psychology and technology background. The programme will focus on social and mental wellbeing for the most vulnerable students who have struggled throughout the pandemic, but also as an early intervention for other students. £7,500 from Allchurches Trust will support the growth of this one of a kind programme.
St Luke’s Healthcare for the Clergy, London
£20,000 from Allchurches will support St Luke’s Healthcare for the Clergy to offer counselling and therapy to as many dioceses as possible, supporting clergy and their families who are suffering as a result of COVID-19. This will give them the resilience and skills they need to work on the frontlines, helping the most vulnerable in their own communities.
St Stephen’s Church, Bowling with Shine (West Bowling), Bradford
Shine West Bowling is a vibrant community hub reaching the socially excluded, bringing communities together, and delivering a wide range of community services to people of all ages, faiths and ethnicities. £5,500 from Allchurches Trust will support the transformation of a dark basement room into a counselling space for individual and group support, which leads onto a tranquil garden ideal for wellbeing groups. West Bowling is an area which already had an above average number of people with mental health issues before the pandemic, and so this space will seek to address the increasing need for support.
Alternatives Trust, East London
£17,700 from Allchurches will enable Alternatives Trust East London to reinvent their free counselling services with the addition of a new centre manager. Alternatives Trust supports many disadvantaged migrant families who have suffered more than other groups during this challenging period and throughout their lives - 90% of their existing clients have experienced sexual abuse, domestic abuse, and/or modern slavery. Funding will enable the trust to reach more people with one-to-one counselling and help them to address issues of depression, anxiety and trauma exacerbated by the pandemic.
*Header image: Alternatives Trust East London