Grassroots 'listening' projects will help churches tackle poverty

By staff writers
March 16, 2010

Church Action on Poverty (CAP) is encouraging local churches and grassroots organisations to run “listening” activities in their communities. They are offering grants to help this happen.

The activities will involve listening to people who are experiencing poverty about their views and experiences of work and unemployment, uncovering the issues and myths that keep people poor.

Events around the country will feed back into a national campaign tackling some of the issues identified. Organisations will also receive support to take on local campaigns.

Churches and other groups can apply for up to £250 in expenses to be reimbursed, and all applicants receive a voucher for free training support.

CAP has announced a deadline of 30 April for Round One, and 31 May for Round Two. All activities must take place between April and July.

“We want to make sure that churches and organisations working at the coalface, and people with direct experience of poverty, get to make their voices heard,” said CAP National Co-ordinator, Niall Cooper.

The listening campaigns are part of a national programme on working-age poverty, run by CAP in partnership with the charity Community Links.

In North West England and Yorkshire & Humber, CAP is also running related programmes, providing training for grassroots groups on how to engage in public life and deal with the media.

Cooper explained that, “Whoever wins the upcoming general election, we’ll be challenging them to act and remove the barriers that keep people trapped in poverty”.


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