Our Stories of Hope event was a great success

Our Stories of Hope event was a great success, with 60 people hearing about community development challenges and successes in London. We were encouraged to live a life beyond ourselves, and to not be fooled by how someone looks.

The latest sets of refugees arriving here have come through truly awful experiences, some as recently as 6 months ago. Our services are grappling with a new level of trauma. But people are more than their suffering, and through careful and committed community development we can add value and joy back into lives. We need to remember that the people we are helping are more important than our own vision of what programs should be – we need to listen and adapt.

Thank you to all five of our speakers, Dan Morland and Beth Emmanuel Church for hosting, and the open hearts who came to listen.

Despite the serious goals of community development, there can be joy and laughter as part of moving forward.

Dan Morland, the pastor of Beth Emmanuel church, knows first hand the importance of community development and being a good neighbour. His church is on Grey Street, south of Hamilton Road.

Sue’s attendance at a Christian Community Development conference two years ago led her to create an after school tutoring program at Village Green Community Church.

The Stories of Hope event was emceed by David Cottrill of North Park Community Church. David has deep and wide experience with London’s new arrivals and the social services provided by both churches and government. Dr. Alison gave a stirring account of the trauma experienced by recent refugees to London.

Our Stories of Hope event wrapped up with a Q&A panel. Madison described how her experiences with community development had inspired her to live a life beyond herself. Beth added a lot of wisdom to the evening, and said that we build value in others by building a bridge from our heart to another’s. She encouraged us to be a guest in our own neighbourhood, not the boss, and to work toward a system change, not quick bandaid solutions.

Here are the 8 principles of community development. This was the handout at the event.



Sorry, comments are closed for this post.