CrossReach Week highlights the value of social care

By agency reporter
September 24, 2017

The Church of Scotland's annual CrossReach week programme begins on Sunday 24 September 2017 –Social Care Sunday—when congregations are encouraged to think about all the social care work underway in their community, not just the work done by CrossReach, but also by other care providers and local authorities.

From its earliest days in 1869, CrossReach has worked with some of Scotland’s most vulnerable people. Today CrossReach runs 70 social care services across the country, offering care and support to children, families, older people and people with disabilities.

The Rt Rev Dr Derek Browning, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland,  is preaching at Culross Abbey on 24 September as part of its 800-year anniversary celebrations. Then in the afternoon he will travel to Dundee to launch CrossReach week with a special 4pm service at Coldside Church, home to a volunteer-led café for people recovering from addictions.

The Moderator said he is keen to meet some of the CrossReach staff who spend their working lives helping others. “CrossReach week is a wonderful opportunity to showcase some of the iconic caring work done in the name of the Church of Scotland," Dr Browning said.

"There are many units and facilities the length and breadth of the country that provide care and kindliness in the name of Jesus to some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.

“Here is a good news story for the Church. Counselling, support through some of the difficult situations in life, and non-judgemental love are hallmarks in the work of CrossReach," he added.

"It will be wonderful to visit different units in Dundee, Perth, Kilmarnock, Glasgow and Edinburgh as the week unfolds.”

During the six-day programme of visits the Moderator will speak at events, lead devotions and host a reception for former service users. The Moderator will also visit a variety of CrossReach services including:

  • Perth Prison Visitors Support and Advice Centre, which offers help and practical advice to families of prisoners in HMP Perth. It provides a welcoming place to relax in before or after a visit, plus a play area for children.
  • Morven Day Services, which supports people living in East Ayrshire to recover from periods of poor mental health. Over the last 20 years, Morven’s staff have worked to reach out into their community and to be there for people as soon as they need support.
  • Morlich House, a care home for older people in Morningside, Edinburgh. They have developed a unique 1950s street in their grounds which has become a way for people to remember and share their lives' experiences.
  • CrossReach Perinatal Services in Edinburgh and Glasgow, where staff support families struggling with the impact of perinatal mental health problems. The counselling service enables parents and their babies to move forward to secure a positive future.

Bill Steele, Convener of the Social Care Council said CrossReach week offers a rare chance to recognise the value of social care work and the positive impact it has on people’s lives.

“We know that the Moderator will receive an enthusiastic reception at each place he visits, and we are delighted that the work being done in Christ’s name and the lives that are changed for the better will be highlighted and acknowledged as widely as possible," he said.

“We are extremely grateful, therefore, that the Moderator is willing to give the Church’s Social Care Council a week of his very busy year in office. We believe this contribution underlines the importance the Church places on the work undertaken by all members of staff as well as volunteers at CrossReach."

He concluded: “I’m very much looking forward to a week starting in Dundee and ending, after a wide range of engagements, in our Head Office, Charis House.”

* Read more about CrossReach here

* Church of Scotland http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/

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