Peterborough Cathedral helps scale up the work of charity, Hope into Action
Hope into Action, the award winning Peterborough-based charity which houses the homeless in partnership with local churches, is scaling up its operation in more ways than one. Having grown in the last four years from a standing start to supporting vulnerable people in collaboration with 22 local churches in 6 towns and cities, it is now working with Peterborough Cathedral.
“Peterborough is the first Cathedral we have worked with,” says Ed Walker, Executive Director of Hope into Action, “but the same model is true for this project as for all the others. Hope into Action organises the purchase of a suitable house, usually funded by private investors, then manages the house and provides professional support for the residents, helping them with health, work and other issues. Members of the congregation commit to praying for the tenants, mentoring them and offering them the love and friendship that is so vital to their wellbeing.”
“It’s easy for people to see the Cathedral as mainly a tourist destination or a venue for events,” says Jonathan Baker, Canon Missioner at the Cathedral, “but in fact we have a congregation of around 300 regular worshippers. Hope into Action has been brilliant in helping us to provide a long term solution for a family who would otherwise have been shunted from one form of temporary accommodation to another, with all the instability that brings. Members of the congregation have donated furniture and equipment to help set up the house, and one of our small groups has taken on the role of offering friendship and support to the residents. ”
“Having had such a positive experience in working with Hope into Action to rehouse one family, we are now looking at a second household and anticipate that moving forward,” added Canon Baker.
The vision of Hope into Action is that virtually every church can house the homeless. So far 12 churches in Peterborough and 10 in Nottingham, Norwich, Lincoln, Swindon and Cambridge have taken up the challenge. It is Hope into Action’s ambition to be established in 20 towns by the year 2020.
For more information about Hope into Action visit www.hopeintoaction.org.uk
For more information about worshipping at Peterborough Cathedral visit www.peterborough-cathedral.org.uk/worship.html