One of the problems we have at CUF is that we’re doing lots of great things, but they are so diverse and varied in nature that it can sometimes be hard to condense how we help into one simple message.
From funding work with Asylum Seekers to supporting food banks; training young people to be leaders in their community whilst helping others to get control of their finances, we’re doing a lot of great work across the whole of England.
Here is a little list to help you identify just a small handful of the areas where your support is helping.
CUF has now set up partnerships with 18 diocese across the country. These partnerships are called Joint Ventures and mean that dedicated teams in these 18 diocese are supporting churches and local communities so that they can flourish.
Last winter, one of these Joint Ventures, Greater Together Manchester, recruited 120 volunteers who gave over 4000 hours of their time to provide more than 500 beds for the city’s homeless.
Another Joint Venture in Lancashire, Together Lancashire, are working with 30 food banks and have provided nearly 100 families with slow cookers to help them provide nutritious and cheap food.
Last year, as many as 12,000 people throughout England were trained by the experts in our Together Network (this is the collective name for our 18 Joint Ventures) with 365 workshops, training sessions, and presentations taking place throughout the year.
The Near Neighbours programme is a significant part of our work in bringing people together in diverse communities. Since 2011, Near Neighbours have given a grand total of £3.92m to grassroots activity to strengthen local communities.
Another big part of our work is through the Just Finance Foundation which is working to change the way finance works in our country. We are working with Young Enterprise and the Church of England to deliver savings clubs and teaching around saving to Primary School children across the country.
As well as working with schools, we are currently raising money through the Mustard Seed Appeal so that, through the Just Finance Foundation, every diocese will have a dedicated finance worker to support their church and community.
Although we have moved from being primarily a grants fund to being a development agency, CUF still awards small grants to community projects. In 2015 alone, CUF awarded almost £500k to local community projects through Together Grants.
Since 2013, CUF has produced 34 publications that offer guidance and insight on everything from how churches can best engage with communities and take on social action.
We’re leading the way in terms of volunteer management as there are now over 30 downloadable resources on our website.
There are now over 50 Places of Welcome in this country that are offering a welcoming place for people who feel lonely and isolated. (And this network is growing every day)
Through our lookup tool, every single parish in the country has been mapped out by our team of experts to provide in-depth insight into levels of deprivation across the country.
This is just a small indication of how you’ve been changing lives and communities!