Since the redevelopment of Lozells Methodist Church in 2011, the new Church Centre has become a hive of community activity offering people from diverse backgrounds and faiths opportunities to meet and enjoy activities.
Last week the visit of Lord Nick Bourne, Minister of Faith and Parliamentary Under Secretary, Wales enabled the Centre to demonstrate how it works in unity for the community. He was greeted by young carers at the holiday club who were waiting to go off on their trip to the park.
Ecumenical colleagues Rev Alison Cozens, Priest in charge at Lozells and Newtown, and Rev Alison Richards, Methodist Minister at Lozells and Villa Road Methodist Churches, both welcomed Lord Bourne to Lozells. Citizens UK Lead organiser Saeed Haique and other community partners were given a tour of the building with Lord Bourne.
That morning the Job Club was in full swing with people accessing the computers for their job searches, helped by the Centre Manager and resident artist, Eddy Aigbe. Others were waiting for appointments to see the Benefits Officer. Volunteers were helping out in the Centre, running the Cafe and chatting to others who called in for a cuppa.
There was a short presentation from Terry Rigby and Caron Thomson, the centre’s partners from Forward for Life, showing ‘The Waiting Room’ resources they have developed for mental health and Suicide prevention training.
Thanks go to the centre’s partner Rabiya from ‘Near Neighbours’ who had arranged the visit and helped on the day with her enthusiasm and encouragement as always. Lord Bourne said it was a ‘unique Centre’ offering a welcome to many people of different faiths and culture.