Our Church Hall plays host to many different groups week in week out and is used by all ages. More than 800 people per week, that's a footfall of over 40,000, come through the doors for a range of community activities.
Our Community Cafe offers free tea, coffee and light snacks through our partnership with the Tesco FareShare organisation who donate their unsold bread and fruit & veg to us several times a week. Visitors to our Foodbank can take home with them extra bread and fruit & veg in addition to their emergency food parcels. We have just become part of the Places of Welcome Network.
We're situated in one of the top 10% most deprived electoral wards in the country where only one in three households have access to a vehicle, way below the national average. It's important therefore that we offer facilities to the local community.
We run a Messy Church programme whereby children between the ages of 3 to 11 can come and engage in crafts and activities and have a 2 course hot meal, once again free of charge. The young people must be accompanied by a parent/carer and they are encouraged to assist their children in the crafts and activities and to sit down with their children and the Messy Church Leaders to enjoy a meal with their children. There are many single parents in this area and social isolation, particularly amongst young parents, is an increasing problem especially now that the local Children's Centre has closed.
Our Church Hall plays host to a Winter Night Shelter taking the homeless off the streets during the coldest nights of the winter. We have more than 30 volunteers and provide a bed for the night, an evening meal and breakfast, good second hand clothes, and a range of essential toiletries. We are shortly installing a shower room in the building so that our guests can enjoy a hot shower. We have secured funding for this. We are shortly to launch a Day Shelter providing somewhere for the homeless to drop in during the day offering a meal plus help from local agencies offering housing and benefit advice.
In addition to the above, the Hall is used by an Over 50s Exercise group; a Parent & Baby Exercise Group; Slimming World; Rainbows, Brownies and Guides; Card Craft classes; an allotment society; the Potteries Bonsai Club; birthday parties; Troupe Dancers; and a Choir.
The building was built 45 years ago and needs a facelift. We are refurbishing our kitchen and our Men's and Ladies Washrooms and we've secured funding for this. The Hall however is the busiest room in the building, getting the most wear and tear.. In addition to painting the bare brick walls, we're resealing the floor and polishing it, installing eco friendly LED lights, fitting upvc windows and doors.