News Archive - April 2005
From the suggestions made by the congregation at the end of last year, the PCC has adopted a UK charity this year for our support. Emmaus works among homeless people by providing them with a community in which they can learn new skills, regain their self-esteem, and re-integrate into normal society.
Hand-outs do not solve the problem for homeless people, although they are important in providing food and shelter. Many of them find personal and social pressires beyond their capacity to handle, and they need the experience of a supportive and purposeful community life to recover these skills the rest of us take for granted. Residents are asked to sign off primary benefits (income support and job seekers allowance) when joining the community as a sign of their commitment to the life of the community.
Each Companion (which is how Emmaus residents are known) plays a full part in community life, preparing meals, sharing household chores, and working to raise money to maintain their community and to help others. A major project in which they are all engaged is the recycling of old furniture and household goods, which are then sold at low prices to those who otherwise could not afford them.
In Emmaus men and women who have been homeless, unemployed and dependent on hand-outs support themselves by working on Community business and also begin to help others. There are Emmaus communities in St Albans and Carlton (NW of Bedford), so the help we can offer will benefit our own area, and groups are working in many parts of the UK to help create other communities.
Permalink | Comment