Faiths Forum is committed to supporting Black communities especially institutions that have been struggling with their services due to the pandemic. This is why we are working on a new project called ‘Coping with Covid’ which aims to support and encourage Black-minority Churches to help them deal with the impact of Covid-19. It will also help Churches contribute more to civil society structures and programmes, and improve their resilience – in the interests of not only their own congregation but the wider local community.
The support includes:
Dealing with the effects of Covid-19:
- Connecting Churches to big food distribution hubs (e.g. Felix Project) or to organisations that befriend those who are isolated, lonely, or mental health at-risk (e.g. Age UK);
- Putting Churches in touch with experts in domestic abuse awareness training and support;
- Obtaining debt advice for congregation members
Help with financial planning:
- Drafting funding applications to National Lottery, government, foundations etc, for Covid-related projects;
- Advice on account keeping and financial resilience.
- Help with legal issues;
- Good governance;
- Covid-19 risk assessments;
- Help churches demonstrate their impact through case studies or website development.
- Getting churches connected to policymakers in City Hall, local authorities and government departments;
- Linking them to civil society organisations, emergency planning networks etc;
- Providing a peer forum where they can connect with other churches to share good practice and problems, and scale up projects.
The only requirement for participating Churches is that they should deliver support to their local community during Covid-19, and ‘cascade’ the advice they receive to other churches in their network.
They are also invited to become part of the Strengthening Faith Institutions network giving them access to further training opportunities, a free health-check of their governance structure, safeguarding and financial systems.