Outreach at Lion Walk Church is about raising awareness of human need and supporting community projects worldwide. We regularly support projects in our local community and across the world, with funds raised from our lunchtime concerts and from donations from members.

We collect for the Christian Aid door-to-door collections during Christian Aid Week. Through the period of Harvest Thanksgiving, we have gathered in donations for the local Soup Run, which teams from our congregation support each month, as well as our substantial contributions from the congregation for Commitment for Life. At Christmas-time we raise funds from the Christmas Tree Festival and from Christmas services for the Colchester Night Shelter and the Colchester and Tendring Women’s Refuge.

We normally support one ‘focus charity’ which changes once or twice a year, and then we also donate smaller sums of money to other charities, with a particular focus on those based in our own community or smaller charities. Our focus charity at present is Homestart Colchester. Here are details of the charities to which we donated recently.

Donations made in September 2018

Homestart Colchester – our new Focus Charity (£500)  Home-Start is one of the leading family support charities in the UK, and their volunteers help families with young children deal with the challenges they face. They support parents as they learn to cope, improve their confidence and build better lives for their children. Families struggling with post-natal depression, isolation, physical health problems, bereavement and many other issues receive the support of a volunteer who will spend around two hours a week in a family’s home supporting them in the ways they need. Home-Starts across the UK also support families in groups, hold day trips and Christmas parties and help access local services, as well as lots of other support.

Stepping Stones Play and Learn   (£200) – Based at the Wilson Marriage Centre, Stepping Stones Play & Learn Group is an integrated nursery for mainstream children and children with additional needs. They have a tots group for babies with special needs, and an integrated nursery to give both mainstream children and children with additional needs the chance to play and learn together. They also run  ‘After School Clubs’ for children with challenging needs.

New Bridge Foundation (£200) New Bridge’s motto is ‘befriending reduces re-offending’. Working in prisons throughout England and Wales, New Bridge’s volunteers build up a link with their ‘own’ offender, writing regular letters and visit them every few months. Research shows that a strong visiting system improves prison life and contributes to a reduction in re-offending on release.

Mzimkhulu Trust  (£200) The Lorraine Poswa Mzimkhulu Pre-School was established in 1994 by the late Lorraine Poswa and the community of Zithathele area in the rural town of Libode, Eastern Cape, South Africa. The area was subjected to some of the worst ravages of the apartheid area and as a result still suffers from extreme deprivation and poverty, with very high levels of unemployment. The school plays a vital role in the community. Most of the children are HIV positive or are HIV orphans. Most are living with grandparents or with older siblings who themselves are still in high school. The meal they get at the school is usually their only meal of the day.

Young Dementia UK  (£200) Dementias that affect younger people can be rare and difficult to recognise.  People can also be very reluctant to accept there is anything wrong when they are otherwise fit and well, and they may put off visiting their doctor. YoungDementia UK is the dedicated national charity for younger people with dementia and their families.   Over 42,000 people diagnosed with dementia in the UK are aged between 30 and 65.  It is a life-changing condition to have at any age, but when you are younger and believe you have a long and full life ahead of you, the impact is significantly different.   We are committed to helping those affected by this challenging condition to continue to live life, by providing support, social events and information.

CBM  (£200)  Formerly ‘Christian Blind Mission’ CBM works today with people with a range of disabilities. People living in poverty with disability are the world’s poorest people. CBM transforms the lives of people with disability, their families and communities in the poorest places of the world. Every year, they help over 30 million people living with and at risk of disabilities in more than 60 countries worldwide.

Felsted Aid for Deprived Children (UK-Aid) (£200) Felsted Aid supports the Revival Centre in the town of Chernihiv, Ukraine which treats sick and disabled children, especially those genetically affected by the Chernobyl disaster. It is now recognised as a centre of excellence by UNICEF. This small charity, based in Essex, makes trips 3 times a year with their three vans and trailers in convoy, driven by volunteers and loaded with donations received from churches, businesses and community centres.

Donations made in May 2018

Samaritans of Colchester, Tendring and Suffolk Borders (Lion Walk Focus Charity)
Donation £500
Based in Walsingham Road, the Samaritans offer a safe place for you to talk any time you like, in your own way – about whatever’s getting to you. You don’t have to be suicidal. You can hear from others about how they have been helped. Please don’t suffer alone.

Child Health International 
Donation £200
A small charity which work to improve the lives of children and young adults suffering from cystic fibrosis, mainly by supporting improved medical services in hospitals in Eastern Europe, where doctors treating children with cystic fibrosis struggle to provide good care with limited resources.
They start with a fact finding visit by a specialist team from a UK CF centre to see how the local service works and identify opportunities for improvement. Very often there is a lack of specialist nurses, physiotherapists and dietitians, and they help fill these gaps by providing training.

Grapevine Essex 
Donation £200
Based in Chelmsford, Grapevine aims to make an impact on the lives of adults with learning disabilities by providing the necessary tools for change to enable them to lead active and purposeful lives. Anyone aged 18 or over with a learning disability can apply for membership. Members are invited to attend a diverse programme of fully-supported and affordable activities and events that are held all year round.

The Suffolk Law Centre
Donation £200
The Suffolk Law Advice Centre is a free legal service provided through a collaboration of the local charity, ISCRE, Suffolk & North Essex Law Society [SNELS] and a national Pro bono charity, LawWorks.
Since the demise of Legal Aid services, this community based charity relies on donations to keep going. They offer 30 minutes of free legal advice in areas such as family, employment, immigration, housing, small claims, wills and probate, community care, personal injury and dispute resolution, from legally qualified professional volunteers.

Trinity Homeless Project (Trinity Methodist Church, Clacton)
Donation £200
Trinity Methodists are in the process of building a Day Centre as part of the church building, to provide somewhere for homeless people to shower and spend the day; there is provision in the town for sleeping, but not for the day. Work on building the extension is due to start very soon. They are appealing for financial help to acquire a laptop and appropriate software, to book people into the Centre and help them with their needs.
There is a high level of homelessness in the Clacton area. Jaywick is one of the very poorest areas in Britain. Apart from the poor housing conditions, people often don’t have internet access, or have difficulty accessing online benefits even if they do. Without access to benefits they are not able to rent a property, nor do they have the documentation to open a bank account, and can suffer from social isolation. There is a definite need for help.

Donations made in February 2018

Samaritans of Colchester, Tendring and Suffolk Borders (Lion Walk Focus Charity)
Donation £500
Based in Walsingham Road, the Samaritans offer a safe place for you to talk any time you like, in your own way – about whatever’s getting to you. You don’t have to be suicidal. You can hear from others about how they have been helped. Please don’t suffer alone.

Praxis Community Projects
Donation £200
Based in London, Praxis Community Projects is committed to working with vulnerable migrants. We are deeply concerned for the safety and well being of refugees, asylum seekers, refused asylum seekers, people with limited or no recourse to public funds as a result of their immigration status, young unaccompanied asylum seekers, victims of human trafficking, foreign national offenders and others who find it difficult to settle in the UK.
Praxis operates a walk in advice service and operates projects which seek to address the fundamental human rights of new migrants.

Emmaus UK – Colchester branch
Donation £200
Emmaus Colchester provides a home and meaningful work for up to 34 formerly homeless people. Our purpose built community offers a comfortable home, while our two shops and two warehouses, open to the public, provide work and generate the funding to keep our community going. Additionally, we now have an online store with eBay, selling home, garden and garage products alongside restored and upcycled furniture.

Iceni Ipswich
Donation £200
In a perfect world, every child in Suffolk would be nurtured by a loving family, achieve great things at school and live in a supportive community. But sadly, not every child has these opportunities.
Iceni supports families in Ipswich and Suffolk to give all our children the opportunity to have a safe, healthy and happy start in life. We believe that tackling the causes of addiction, poverty and other inequalities lies in effective targeted early intervention and addressing the unmet and inter-generational problems that are entrenched in deprived neighbourhoods in Suffolk. Our work is designed to help those who will raise the next generation of children, rather than applying sticking plasters to today’s problems. All aspects of a family’s development is addressed through a host of services to parents, including addiction assistance, domestic abuse and improving parent child relationships.

The Haven Project
Donation £300
Based in Colchester, The Haven is ‘a place of hope and inspiration, positive about personality disorder’. Our Recovery Programme is facilitated by group work but individual one to one appointments are also available. There are regular Life Skills and Emotional Resilience programmes, Wellbeing programmes and Crafts and Skills sessions. We accept calls, as well as face to face contact. We provide outreach on the basis of a needs assessment.
The Haven is a community, and clients are engaged in all aspects of the project from recruitment to service design. This is part of their recovery pathway. This is important, because people with Personality Disorder have typically been deprived of any control over their life especially where – as is most often the case – childhood and growing up has been marred by abuse and neglect. Referrals to the Haven can come from organisations and individuals including the person themselves.

Donations made in December 2017

Samaritans of Colchester, Tendring and Suffolk Borders (Lion Walk Focus Charity)
Donation £500
Based in Walsingham Road, the Samaritans offer a safe place for you to talk any time you like, in your own way – about whatever’s getting to you. You don’t have to be suicidal. You can hear from others about how they have been helped. Please don’t suffer alone.

Christian Aid Rohingya Appeal
Donation £200
Escalating violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine State in late August 2017 has forced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes, including many Rohingya refugees who have fled to Bangladesh, fearing for their lives. More than 500,000 Rohingya people have crossed the border into Bangladesh and unknown numbers remain displaced in Myanmar. As villages in Myanmar continue to be destroyed, figures are expected to rise, with up to 15,000 people crossing the border each day. Those fleeing to the border have walked for miles, and for days on end. They have no money for food or shelter. Many mothers are escaping with newborn babies. With limited medical facilities, people are sick and at risk of serious disease.
Christian Aid is on the ground, providing urgent support to these vulnerable, displaced people. Working with local partners DAM and CCDB, they have distributed hygiene kits to 4,000 families and provided shelter kits to 10,000 families. In the coming months, they will improve sanitation by constructing latrines and handpumps and expand their distribution of medical supplies and services.

Donation £200
Talitha is a charity made up of professional artists and art therapists passionate about the potential to restore hope, dignity and worth through the freedom of creative arts. It delivers workshops for the relief of those in need as a result of trauma/abuse, ill health or disability including those rescued from sex trafficking, women living with domestic violence, those living with dementia, homelessness and ex-offenders.

Global Justice Now
Donation £200
Global Justice Now is a democratic social justice organisation working as part of a global movement to challenge the powerful and create a more just and equal world. It mobilises people in the UK for change, and acts in solidarity with those fighting injustice, particularly in the global south. It was formerly called the World Development Movement.

Crisis at Christmas
Donation £200
We work side by side with people to help them rebuild their lives. From decades of experience of working with thousands of homeless people, we know what’s needed to leave homelessness behind for good. We use this experience to shape the services we provide and the changes we campaign for. Every bit of our work is integrated, and all contributes to our purpose of ending homelessness. The services we provide are carefully informed through our decades of experience of working with homeless people, and the research we’ve carried out over the years. Our research is driven by our knowledge from working side-by-side with homeless people every day. And this influences our campaigning for permanent change.

Book Aid
Donation £100
Bookaid is a charity that sends books to refugees in Africa. Amazingly they provide 3 books for £6 including postage. These range from easy readers to novels to dictionaries. There are also useful books such as handbooks for nurses and midwives. Bookaid encourage donors to give monthly in a scheme called “ Reverse Book Club!” but we are giving a one-off donation as usual.

Recent collections and donations

May 2018 House-to-House Collection for Christian Aid
Christmas Collections 2017 for Colchester Night Shelter and Colchester and Tendring Women’s Refuge:
£643 to each organisation
Autumn 2017 Collection for Commitment for Life: (Christian Aid work in Bangladesh)





Amnesty International – we have having regular presence at their conferences and support activities, such as card signing around Christmas-time.