Bishop's Appeals updates: Supporting the Anglican Communion
In his Lent and Advent Bishop's Appeals, Bishop Robert seeks support from the Diocese for specific organisations and ministries. The Diocese raised over £37,000 in Appeals for Anglican Communion Fund projects over the past two years. Read more on the success of their projects to empower women and support Covid-19 relief efforts.
For Advent 2019, The Bishop's Appeal supported Anglican Communion Fund projects which focus on the empowerment of women. “Women often both bear the heaviest costs of poverty or conflict and are also those whose empowerment can do the most to bring development that reaches grass roots and bring hope for the future,” said Bishop Robert, launching the Appeal.
Generosity across the Diocese in Europe has supported and empowered two specific projects. These are a project called 'Women on the Frontline', supporting women who are serving in conflict zones, and a second dedicated to Church and Community mobilisation in Tanzania.
Women on the Frontline
Areas suffering from conflict often struggle with the effects of fighting such as poverty and immense trauma. Women in these areas play a vital role, in practical ways, which is often overlooked. ‘Women on the Frontline’ is a programme designed for senior Christian women in areas affected by violence, conflict and poverty, bringing them together on retreat and giving practical training in reconciliation. The programme is led by Caroline Welby. Peace, reconciliation and post-conflict trauma are crucial to those living within conflict zones, and these women have the role of helping bring support to people in these areas. Programmes have run and been planned in South Sudan, Burundi, the Solomon Islands, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Middle East and Pakistan.
Safiya Nyirongo, CEO, Anglican Communion Fund says:
"Women sometimes come into the training worn down and burdened by the expectations
placed on them, as well as their experiences of conflict. They may have been forced to
leave their community or may be living alongside deeply traumatised women without
knowing how to support them. They may be discouraged. However, they often come out
of the programme full of hope and a sense of possibility, and sensing solidarity with
other women. They feel they are loved and called into their role and that they can make a
Church and Community Mobilisation, Tanzania
Church and Community Mobilisation Programmes are run in communities globally and are having significant impacts on livelihoods. The Anglican Church in Tanzania are passionate about their vision of seeing spiritual and socio-economic transformation in their communities. The Anglican Communion Fund is supporting The Anglican Church of Tanzania to provide Church and Community Mobilisation Programmes in over twenty of their dioceses as one of the steps towards fulfilling their vision.
The Church and Community Mobilisation Programmes are run through Mother's Union Bible Study Groups. As well as providing bible study, these programmes are self-sufficient groups of women who are providing basic needs to people in their community, helping people start businesses through financial support and other projects to help livelihoods. One of these projects is a community tree nursery in Kagera, a local example of helping to address global climate change, which is exacerbated by human consumption, deforestation and neighbouring conflict. As well as helping the environment, this project enables people to develop farming methods, business and entrepreneurial skills.
The global Pandemic has inflicted severe challenges on the poorest and most vulnerable communities. The Bishop's Advent 2020 Appeal supported the Anglican Communion Fund's Covid-19 support projects. Through the Bishop's Appeal, our diocese contributed to projects providing food, sanitation, virus prevention communication and training and necessities. The Fund comments:
"The Anglican Communion Fund will remember 2020 as a year that the Church responded to a global pandemic together in unity and sent relief, sharing the love of Christ across our family of believers, and bearing witness to God’s great capacity for provision, love and hope."
The Anglican Communion Fund was able to bring together swiftly a total of £280,000 to over 50 projects providing care to people most affected. In their report they said; "The pandemic has had a disproportional impact on the poor. It has been exacerbated by poverty, conflict, migration and refugees, and failure of the state. It has aggravated issues such as gender-based violence and human trafficking."
To find out more about the impact of funds raised towards Covid-19 support, you can watch Archbishop Justin Welby's personal message of thanks and read the report.
Bishop Robert said:
"I want to express my sincere thanks for such generous responses from our diocese to my two Appeals. These Anglican Communion Fund projects are clearly achieving real impact on the ground. They are helping to care for our brothers and sisters across the Anglican Communion, whose needs remain in our prayers."
Photos: Anglican Communion Fund
We will feature more website updates on previous Bishop's Appeals in the coming weeks.