The Bishop of Lincoln’s Social Justice Fund provided a grant to fund the employment of a part-time community development worker (CDW) to support members of St George’s PCC in the community’s use of the church, developing better links with Crosby Community and promoting community cohesion across the varied faiths, ethnic groups and generations in the area. The responsibility of the CDW was to promote the community space within in the church as an affordable, inclusive space for the whole Crosby community.
A variety of new groups have commenced, including free first aid courses, free street dance classes, the Foodbank and Bangla school. Existing classes continued to take place at the venue, along with increased provision for ESOL classes, and training/volunteer opportunities for both native speakers and those whose first language is not English. Some groups had to be turned away as the church did not have enough existing space to accommodate the volume of new users the CDW attracted. The PCC is prioritising infrastructure improvements to ensure the space is used to its full potential.
College students, including those with special educational needs and whose first language is not English, have been given work experience and training to help build confidence and employability. 600 people have benefitted from the project in the Crosby/Scunthorpe area, and has enabled the PCC to forge/develop working partnerships with organisations also working in the area, as well as strengthening links with local churches.