Below - Action Station, South Shields
Below - Youth President Sarah Malik with Church members and flood victims at Morpeth Methodist Church
Friday lunchtime saw us at Aquila Way, an enterprising Christian charity working with the homeless in the North East. We were particularly impressed with their focus on helping people to take the next step into living independently - with the support of a local mentor.
Action Station in South Shields provided us with delicious scones and afternoon tea! An initiative of the local Methodist, Anglican and Catholic churches it runs a credit union and debt counselling service - more needed than ever in these financially stretched times - as well as a drop-in cafe. It also houses the Workers Education Association and courses for local people in computing and other skills.
We were very concerned to learn that its funding is under threat and we hope that its application for new funding will be successful as it is meeting a great need.
Our final visit was to Morpeth Methodist Church where we met the Minister Keith Harbour and other members together with some of those who had lost homes and possessions in the floods which hit the town last year.
Some people have still not returned to their own homes and we were able to hear their stories and of the acts of generosity and the sense of comminity spirit which had been engendered.
A full day but one that reminded us forcefully of the goodness, commitment and self-sacrifice of so many people in challenging situations. Thanks be to God.