Welcome to the latest Life & Soul newsletter, we are excited to share with you what we have been up to since our last newsletter in March.
As I am writing this I am looking
back at the prayer points from
our last newsletter. God has
been so gracious in answering
so many of our prayers:
- Schools have stayed open
so all young people can
access the learning,
and support that they need.
- Doors have opened for us
to work in two new secondary schools and a number of
new primary schools in
the last few months.
- God’s favour has been on
our fundraising and we have had all that we needed this
last year to support the work
we have wanted to do.
God is good and we are so thankful that he hears and answers our prayers. As it says in 1 John 5:14-15, And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.
And if we know that he hears us
in whatever we ask, we know that
we have the requests that we
have asked of him.
So, thank you to all of you who
have been praying for the work
of Life & Soul, please keep it up
as your prayers are powerful
and effective (James 5:16).
Please pray for:
- Continued funding for
- More schools to open
their doors to Unlimited
- Wisdom, strength, love and protection for all the team.
- Thanks for all the wonderful volunteer mentors and
that more would be prompted to join us.
- And always for the young people, that God’s love and life would break into their lives.
Our Connect Mentoring started in 2014 with one mentor in Skinners’ Kent Academy. The school had approached Life & Soul to see if they could offer support to some of their young people. It quickly became apparent that the need was greater than could be met by one person and one or two other mentors were trained and started going into the school on a weekly basis. In 2017 Bennett requested mentors for their students and then in 2019 St Greg’s also asked for support. Connect has continued in these three schools ever since. At its maximum the project has had approximately 15 to 20 mentors seeing up to 35 students a week across the three schools. In January, we were really pleased to begin providing mentoring support in Skinners’ Grammar School and then, after Easter, we started working in Tunbridge Wells Girls’ Grammar School as well.
We are now seeing around 50 young people a week across all
five schools which is an increase of over 40% in just 3 months. The crisis in young people’s mental health is regularly in the media and we know how hard schools are working to support all their pupils
so we are really pleased to be
able to work with two more local schools to help their young people.
At Easter we very sadly said goodbye to the wonderful Mary Wilson who has been the Co-ordinator for Connect for a number of years. We are so grateful for all that she has done to set up and run Connect, really being instrumental in creating such a professional and effective service. The role can be a frustrating one as plans and requirements are always changing but Mary met everything with a wonderful smile and an amazing, positive can-do attitude. We already miss her on the team but are so glad that she is still mentoring with us.
Angie Solanky has taken over the role and is doing a great job of continuing Mary’s good work, organising, training and supporting our team of mentors and liaising
Connect Mentoring training day September 2022
BECOMING A MENTOR
If you think you would be interested in being part of the work that we do by becoming a mentor then please do get in touch. Mentors generally see two or three students a week in one school which takes a couple of hours. We provide an initial one-day training course, all the materials you need and on-going support and regular training.
Come and be part of an amazing team and make a real difference in the lives of young people. If you
want to know more then take a
look at the new website where
there is further information and testimonies from current
mentors, or get in touch via email.
All mentors must complete an application form, provide references and complete a DBS check.
Post lockdown, children have needed play therapy more than ever; a
safe space to be themselves in which to work through their emotions
and feelings. Many have experienced difficult situations at home, such
as family break up or loss of a loved one. The use of clay, paint, art
and sand allows them time to process and gives them strategies to
cope with different situations.
Jenny and Sarah continue to work with three groups of pupils across two local primary schools each week. This last year Unlimited has been in ten schools and helped nearly one hundred children. We have had some incredibly positive feedback from the work that they
are doing and have created a video testimony which you can watch on our new website (more on that later).
Some schools have indicated that they would like an Unlimited Part 2 course specifically aimed at Year 6 pupils and the transition to secondary school. We are working on putting this together and hope that it will be available from January 2023. To cope with the expected increase in demand we are also putting together a second Unlimited team so that we can go into more schools each term.
We have had the pleasure of working with Tim at Greenbird Web Design
to produce our all-new website. It is at the same address (lifeandsoul.org.uk) but has all new content including the wonderful Unlimited video mentioned above. Nick produced the video and provided his usual fabulous graphic design skills to help with the website.
Sarah Taylor continues to do an amazing job of updating our social media feeds several times a week. If you are on Facebook or Instagram then please do subscribe to our feed. We would really appreciate your help in increasing the reach of the charity which you can do by liking, commenting on and sharing our posts.
A NEW LOOK FOR THE OFFICE
Our current office on the High Street has had two temporary banners
in the window for far too long so we decided it was time for a change.
If you are passing do take a look at our new window sign which should
hopefully catch the attention of a few more passers-by.