Every year the church chooses two charities to support, one local and one working overseas. Our Christmas collections are donated to charities, along with the proceeds of our annual Fair.
For 2024 the charities are:
Bromley Homeless Starter Packs
This is a project set up to collect good quality, household goods and re-distribute them to households moving from homelessness to new tenancies.
Our Local Authority works hard to find homes for homeless people but when someone who has been on the streets or in a hostel gets the keys to their first flat, that’s all they get; a bunch of keys, a floor, walls and a roof. That’s where the Starter Packs come into it. These people may have been living on the streets; in a hostel; sofa-surfing; escaped domestic violence, or just been released from prison.
Starter Packs provide the basic items needed for making a house or flat into a home. It’s a comprehensive package, with bedding, kitchen equipment, toiletries, and cleaning materials. Anne Horner-Tree who runs the scheme, ensures everything included is of good quality, so that the people receiving these packs, feel loved, respected, and dignified.
The Ideas Partnership
In 2018, the Women’s Fellowship, now known as the Fellowship, had a visit from Elizabeth Gowing, a British woman living and working in Kosovo. She told us of a chance encounter with a family living in extreme poverty and insanitary conditions. Their only income was the money the husband made by rifling through discarded rubbish, to find items that could be sold for recycling.
These were Ashkali people, marginalised, forgotten, disenfranchised. Their children did not have shoes or decent clothing, so were not able to attend school: they often scoured the rubbish heaps with their fathers, or went out begging but they were malnourished and always hungry. This scene was replicated all over Fushë Kosovë, where minority populations were living.
Elizabeth lobbied the government and the schools to allow these lost children to be educated, and set up a Saturday school to start their education. Along the way, Elizabeth learned more about life in Fushë Kosovë, and the struggles of the Ashkali people. Beginning with individuals, listening to their stories, their hopes and dreams of a better future, she found ways to fund their small enterprises: purchasing stock, renting premises, teaching sales and investment skills, providing bicycles and adult literacy classes for securing jobs.
Fourteen years on, the Ideas Partnership now have four learning centres in Kosovo, more children are in school and some are university graduates. Health outcomes and work opportunities for the population have greatly improved, and environmental projects are underway. Just imagine what more can be achieved when the dreams and aspirations of the citizens of Kosovo are given flight!
When I was hungry, you gave me food…
Emmanuel supports the Vine food bank run by the Salvation Army in New Addington
Items can be left in the church vestibule or at Sainsbury’s on the high street (not on Station Road), even if they are not bought in-store. Carrier bags are also welcome. Donations can also be made to their JustGiving page:
For a list of items most wanted please check the current magazine
Emmanuel has been awarded a Bronze certificate from Eco Church (ecochurch.arocha.org.uk)
Emmanuel is pleased to be part of the Eco Church movement. It means we are committed to caring for God’s creation.
In the last 2 years, we’ve already made a number of tangible changes – building our quiet garden, managing our heating bills, swapping our supplies of toilet paper, soaps etc, and making sure we provide vegetarian and vegan options at our catered events. We support FairTrade, have done Toilet Twinning, switch off our floodlights for Earth Day and do #NoMowMay. And we preach, teach and pray regularly on themes around caring for God’s creation.
In April 2023, we were awarded the Bronze Award, and are now working towards Silver.
Churches Together in West Wickham
Emmanuel is a member of Churches Together in West Wickham which brings together 8 local churches for worship on several occasions each year and community action.