A group of 'street angels' who provide a lifeline to those sleeping rough have been awarded £13,500 to help them train and equip new volunteers.
The cash, which is part of £45,000 worth of money being given to organisations across Lancashire, has come from the Police and Crime Commissioner's fund.
Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, Chris Webb, joined Blackpool and The Fylde Street Angels out and about on their outreach around the town centre, and also visited the team at the Emergency Bed Unit in Blackpool above Blackpool Council’s housing options service.
Blackpool and The Fylde Street Angels received £13,500 of funding that will be used to help them train and equip new volunteers, upskill current volunteers and for resources such as drinks and food to give out to vulnerable people.
Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, Clive Grunshaw, has supported Blackpool and The Fylde Street Angels through his Street Pastors, Street Angels and Similar Organisations Fund since 2016.
DPCC Chris Webb said, “I was delighted to meet the team at Blackpool and The Fylde Street Angels and thank them personally for all the incredible work they do, especially during this last year.
“It’s critical we continue to support the important work of Blackpool and The Fylde Street Angels and other organisations like them who make our streets safer and aid the most vulnerable in our communities.
“They provide a lifeline to those living on the streets, who may feel more able to seek additional help when they have become familiar with a person or local group".
CNI Network's February Update:
Homeless people and those living in shelters are now being prioritised for COVID jabs in a pioneering new scheme from Oldham Council.
The Department of Health initially placed people over the age of 80, care home workers, and health and social care workers in the top priority band, but Oldham Council and local GPs insisted on the homeless also being prioritised.
They argued that homeless people and the elderly are most at risk of contracting the virus.
Homeless couple Lee Ullha, 46, and Kelly Heney, 38, were the first to be administered the vaccine, reported Big Issue. Outreach service Street Angels reached out to the pair after they had been living for months in a tent at a local park, and brought them into the shelter to receive the jab."
CNI Network and its family of local projects are invited to contribute to an exciting new initiative which has an aim to share uplifting messages from inspirational people & communities who are helping to keep the UK going. These messages will be shared everyday during lockdown 2021.
For more details on what to share see this document. Please send your video to email@example.com (if a large file WeTransfer.com is a great way to send)
Check out Great British Bubble on:
Premier Christian Radio have featured CNI Network trustee Martin Rowley on the British Empire Medal (BEM) he has received in the New Year Honours:
A British Empire Medal (BEM) has been awarded to Martin Rowley for services to the community in York. Martin is a trustee of the Christian Nightlife Initiatives Network. He told Premier he was touched to receive his nomination.
"I did feel very humbled and honoured that someone had gone to the length of nominating me," he said. "With a nomination you need to have two or three letters of support. Not only has someone nominated me but they've gone to the trouble of finding people to support that nomination. It's just a real genuine honour."
Premier Radio also featured Martin hourly on the news. Martin was also interviewed on BBC Radio York.
AS this incredibly difficult year draws to a close, I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas.
This year the Coronavirus pandemic has affected all of us in some way. Many of us have lost loved ones.
This Christmas, my heart goes out to everyone who is struggling, missing a loved one or isolated from their family.
Christmas is a time when we can reflect on the year that has just gone.
I want to say a massive thank you.
Thank you to the care workers and NHS staff who have risked their lives to save others.
Thank you to the supermarket staff and delivery drivers who have kept us all fed and connected.
Thank you to all of our key workers who have kept us safe and kept our country going.
There is nothing that I can say that will even come close to doing you justice. We all owe you a debt which can never be repaid.
I’ve seen some incredible acts of kindness within my own constituency.
I’ve been so proud to volunteer with Oldham Street Angels to make sure our most vulnerable are able to access the support they need.
It was also wonderful to meet with volunteers from Action Together to learn how they have been helping keep people safe and well this year.
I am always proud to be a patron of Ashton United in the Community. Their excellent pop up pantry has made sure families don’t have to go hungry. It’s sad that something like that is needed but it’s heartwarming to see that people really do care.
We look after each other when times get tough and thanks to the excellent effort of AUITC’s Christmas Robin Appeal and the generosity of the community, 27 local families will receive a Christmas Hamper and 76 local children will get a Christmas gift.
When I sit down for my Christmas dinner, I’ll be thinking of my old work mates from when I was a care worker in Stockport - because for our care workers and so many other key workers, their work doesn’t stop on Christmas Day. I hope that at some point over the festive period, you get a well-earned break.
Next year, I will continue to fight to make sure that you get the pay rise and the respect that you deserve.
This year has been a tough year for all of us. Our country has suffered more than almost any other.
But thanks to the sacrifice of our key workers on the frontline, and the spirit of the British people in keeping each other safe, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
And I hope that, even in the most difficult of circumstances, everyone is able to have a Merry Christmas.
Clive Latimer is a volunteer with Aylesbury Chaplaincy / Street Angels and in 2020 set himself a challenge to walk 1000 miles in a year. Each mile he was challenged to pray for a different person - the results can be seen in this booklet. Clive is setting out a Walking / Wheel Angel challenge for 2021...
What is a prayer mile?
Walk, talk, note, snap, send.
An extract from:- Prayer miles 0 to 1000
It all started Christmas 2019, my daughter Harriet gave me a subscription for the Country Walking magazine. Inside was a challenge to walk 1000 miles in a year. I thought about doing it but it didn't feel quite right, but after praying about it that evening, the next day God gave me an answer: - Yes Clive you can do it, but I would like you to do something for Me, I want you to pray for 1000 people, one for every mile you walk with Me. That felt right, so I started the challenge on 1st January 2020 and finished on 16th November 2020.
These following pages are the 1000 prayer miles (click to open the book) I walked, one for each person. I have met or made contact with so many wonderful people along the way, on Facebook (#walk1000miles) and others.
This is the way I set out: - When I meet someone and start a conversation, I mention that I am on this challenge and would they like to be on my list, nearly every time it is a yes. I enter their contact details on my phone list and what they would like me to pray for.
When I go out prayer walking, I open the list and either write on a notepad or use Keep Notes on my phone. I start my watch to log the distance in miles, then start praying and walking. When the Lord prompts me, I dictate into the phone the words I have been given. When the mile is up, I stop and look around and photograph whatever catches my attention. Then onto the next person on the list. When the walk is finished, I stop the watch. When I get home, I transfer it to my laptop and make some sense out of the speech to text. The prayer mile is then sent on to the person who requested it.
I found it all very exciting, a big adventure, not knowing what is going to happen every mile, where will I go, who will I meet, what God will prompt me to write and what will I photograph.
When you read through the prayer miles, I do hope and pray that you find some meaning in them for yourself.
God bless you.
If you find it helpful, go on, have a go. I challenge you.
If you find it a challenge too far, then have a go with me in 2021 and become a Walking Angel or even a Wheel Angel.
I normally go out with the Aylesbury Chaplaincy as a Street Angel and Healing on the Street (HOTS) team, but with the lockdown and restrictions, I have not been out on the Streets in this capacity since March .
From the 1st of January 2020, I started my 1000 mile prayer walk. In doing this I have met so many different people and found that there is a great need for help, prayer and healing, mentally, physically and spiritually. I completed my 1000 mile prayer walk on November 16th and from then on I was wondering what my next mission will be.
The Lord has put on my heart, that perhaps as well as being Street Angels, Chaplains, Festival Angels, etc, we could also become Walking Angels, as we walk in the streets, town, cities, footpaths, forests, anywhere we walk, even at work, we are all walking as Angels.
In 2021, there will be a greater need for mental health support, people that are really struggling with all their problems and the debts that have occurred. The loss of work and so many people have lost someone and there are still a lot of people with the virus. There is the hope that the vaccine will stop all this and that people will forget, but they are still people that will need help and prayer, healing mentally, physically and spiritually. Our mission is to go out as Walking Angels, to represent Jesus in the world, listening and spending time with people in need. To love the person in front of you.
I have already started. When I go out for a walk, I expect to meet people that God has placed in front of me and that are in need of some sort of help, even if it is only a smile. When you step off the path and let them pass, you are already showing you concern for them. I find that it is so easy to start a conversation, as you are social distancing already. Let the Spirit lead you but don’t push, I find that if you show you are willing to stop and listen, they will soon open up. Before you part, give them your name and try get their name so you can add them to your Walking Angel list. I also make a note to remind me later. You can be praying for them as you continue walking. I am wondering if a badge might be a good talking point.
As Street Angels or Chaplains, you may be thinking, I do that anyway. If that is so, off you go then.
This refers to any one on wheels. Wheel chairs, bikes, skateboards, scooters, pushchairs, office chairs, even in cars.
My 2021 challenge to you.
Go out and give it a try.
God has given us this opportunity to continue the work He has given to do, but in a slightly different way, at any time of the day, until we can go out as before.
Set yourself a goal, to get 50 names on your list, or even more.
God bless you all. Clive Latimer
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