Parish Action

Overview

Our focus is to raise parish awareness in social issues relating to health, justice, poverty, education and refuge both locally and globally by providing a platform for event ideas that support our nominated charities both financially and in partnership by promoting their work. Selection of our 6 charities is made in consultation with the congregation via a parish-wide survey every three years, the next one will be collated in the autumn this year. Each chosen charity is assisted for a period of three consecutive years at which point they can tender for one further period of tenure alongside new suggestions. Charities where volunteering opportunities are possible are particularly encouraged because we are equally interested in our journey and community as well as the funds that we raise. We welcome the promotion of new charities within the parish and if anyone would like to propose a new charity that is close to their hearts please do let us know.

The Parish Action committee ideally has two representatives for each charity, one based at each church, however, we currently have vacancies at both ends of the parish. Heartfelt thanks to the members of the committee and to all those who have kindly given money, time, donations in-kind and volunteered and helped in numerous unsung ways.

The Charities

Bishop of Southwark’s Lent Call 2019 supported projects that provided an income for the Dioceses as well as helping with education, food security and healthcare. One such project abroad was with the work of the Leprosy mission in Northern Sri Lanka and another with the Church Army Africa’s Carlisle College in Nairobi. Projects in the local Diocese included the Sutton Women’s Centre, the Salmon Centre and Christian CARE in Merton. Funds for the Lent Call are raised in our parish via the Lent Brunches at All Saints’ and St Mary’s. For information about the Bishop of Southwark’s 2020 Lent Call click here https://southwark.anglican.org/lentcall

Christian Aid works globally to eradicate poverty and provides practical and effective assistance to tackle the causes and effects of it. The charity works pre-emptively in areas identified as being in great need to try to avert emergencies but also reactively during traumatic times and offering longer term support and help to find solutions for the local people in the aftermath. Christian Aid believes in life before death and is part of a global movement for change. Our parish works together with churches of all denominations in Putney to support this charity with a door-to-door envelope drop. The events to promote this charity are the All Saints’ car wash, collection buckets at tube stations and our church schools and a very successful new initiative, a sponsored walk in central London. To read more about Christian Aid click here https://www.christianaid.org.uk/

Diocese of Southwark Parish Support Fund supports churches and communities in deprived areas of South London. This enables every parish to have clergy when they might not otherwise be able to finance them. The greatest proportion of money raised for this charity is through stewardship in our churches, but in 2019 Parish Action started a new initiative in The Boat Race Family Day which was designed to provide an oasis near the start line for families especially with small children to be able to enjoy the iconic sporting event in a relaxed environment. Big screens were installed in the church to watch the BBC live coverage alongside boat-race themed games and stalls to please all age groups. Although a seed event it proved very popular and is being continued and augmented along similar lines this year. For more information please click here https://southwark.anglican.org/help/stewardship/parish-support-fund

Glass Door is London’s largest emergency shelter and provides a safe, warm place to sleep for more than 100 homeless people per night every winter in local churches, including St Marys’ and other venues. Glass door also provides longer term assistance to help guests build more stable futures giving them time and space to develop relationships and trust. The charity promotes respect, dignity and the ethos that all people have value. The bonfire and firework display at All Saints’ and the annual sleep out on the streets of London provide funds for this cause. For more information please click here https://www.glassdoor.org.uk/

For the last seven years the night shelter at St Marys has run every Monday night from November to Easter. However the Coronavirus restrictions currently in place mean that night shelters, as we know them, cannot now run.  We very much hope this situation will change, but in the mean time we are hoping to raise funds through the Glassdoor sleep out this Autumn.
 
The 2020 annual Sleep Out can also be a Sleep In on Friday 2nd October.  For the first time this year, you can join the event remotely (living room floor or garden) which is a perfect way to get our little ones involved in raising vital funds to help support individuals to end their chapter of homelessness. Or you can still join in person at Duke of York Square (if Government guidance allows). Either way, you can stay connected virtually, with special guests (including actors Colin Firth and Jim Carter) taking part via video uplink.
 

You don’t need to decide yet where to take part. The first step is to save the date and start fundraising. A joint fundraising page has been set up for anyone within the Parish of Putney. Please use the link below.  For more information please contact Rebecca Locke on 07444 055136.

https://www.glassdoor.org.uk/fundraisers/the-parish-of-putneys-sleep-out-or-in-fundraising-page

Regenerate is a local youth and community-based charity that fosters positive transformation in the lives of young people, 8-25 years, and their families. It supports people who may be experiencing financial hardship, behavioural or educational difficulties, unemployment, antisocial behaviour or being at risk of involvement with gangs and crime. The people who run this organisation are from within the Putney and Roehampton community that they are now supporting. Our dedicated event for this charity is the Christmas Fair which the young people help to run. For more information click here https://www.regenerateuk.co.uk/
 

Vulindlela Guardians is a charity based in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe and cares for the orphans of AIDS victims and children who have nobody to pay their school fees. The money we raise goes to pay their school fees and to finance a feeding scheme for the children at the Vulindlela Centre in Bulawayo. The Parish Picnic is the main additional event that supports this charity, but individuals may also sponsor an orphan via an online giving page through the parish website. The parish started to support this charity in 2007 and they are in their last cycle of tenure to end in 2020 but it will still be possible to support the charity online.  Please click here for more info https://www.vulindlelaguardians.com/

Wandsworth Foodbank is within the Trussell Trust national network of foodbanks providing three-day packages of emergency food and support to local people, and assistance to resolve the underlying causes of their crisis. Foodbank also campaigns for structural change at a local and national level to help end hunger and poverty in the UK. Our parish has partnered directly with the foodbank in Tildesley Road. This year we started a scheme which makes shopping bags from the Edinburgh Fringe crowd barrier jackets that would otherwise go into landfill. The congregation can buy into the scheme for £5, then bring their groceries in to church in one bag and collect a replacement for the next month – this scheme is being trialled at All Saints’. Foodbank was chosen by the All Saints’ DCC as one of our Christmas charities this year, and through a link with Westminster Abbey Choir School we were also able to raise £300 in cash which converted to £570 worth of groceries when bought through our Booker cash and carry account. However, our main donation is through a collection of specifically requested groceries on the second Sunday of every month. This charity does not follow the tenure process but has been established as a permanent part of our parish outreach. For more information please click here https://wandsworth.foodbank.org.uk/

During this time of social distancing,  we are asking you to continue your support of Wandsworth Foodbank via their partner charity Bankuet – for more information please click here http://www.bankuet.co.uk   If you’d like to volunteer to help sort food at the new premises (PC World/Curry’s site at Wandsworth Bridge) please send an email to [email protected] 

Fundraising and Finance

 After ten consecutive years of running a charity ball, Parish Action paused to reconsider the style of this major fund-raising event and what direction we would like to take in the future. We are also looking for a major sponsor to partner our next function. It has been decided that we will run an event in February 2021, and we are looking for enthusiastic people to come to join this new committee.

Despite the lack of income from the Parish Ball, funds were still raised from a wide range of events through online and offline appeals. The purchase of a contactless payment machine has improved the ease with which people can donate.

There have been a number of congregation initiatives with an amazing ultramarathon by one parishioner, a table-top sale by another and various external parties who gave concerts and kindly donated proceeds to the Parish Action coffers. Another principal ‘in-kind’ donation alongside the Foodbank donations comes from the parish Toy Service and we also ran a successful collection for clothing to help those being released from Wandsworth prison.

The 2019 total raised is significant with most events raising more than their equivalent in previous years. Grateful thanks to everyone for helping with our practice-based mission.