Last month saw Belper churches hire the Ritz Cinema for a special matinee performance of ‘Despicable Me 2’.
Arrangements were made and tickets went out to the Children’s Centres and Primary schools. Over 80 children, parents and grandparents came on the day and for some it was their first time at the Ritz. Dozens of cakes and cookies were baked and every last one eaten up by some very excited cinema goers!
There are times when day to day life stretches all of us and illness, financial concerns and emotional upset can get the better of us – so it was a great delight to once again be able to extend a very simple hand of unconditional love through this project.
We hope that everyone who got tickets enjoyed the afternoon and thank you to all who contributed in organising and running the afternoon.
Hope for Belper bought together folks from across the congregations to put together Christmas Hampers for those of our neighbours who through numerous circumstances would have been unable to celebrate Christmas with a festive family meal.
Christians from many local churches responded with amazing generosity to sponsor hampers to the tune of £1,600. This meant that on the day we were able to shop for and put together 33 hampers instead of the initial 20 planned.
The staff at the Sure Start Children’s Centre were delighted to be able to support so money more families in this way.
Many thanks to all those who supported the project again this year, from some anecdotal feedback and a note from one family the provision of these hampers means a lot to those who receive them.
Many thanks also goes to ‘Inspirepac’ for specially making and gifting the hamper boxes to order.
Christmas Eve also saw Hope for Belper out on the Market Place once again supporting the Town Council Carol Service. This event is always well attended and the cup of hot chocolate has become a fixture over the years.
Around 500 cups were served and our thanks go to the management of The Black Swan for once again allowing us to work out of their kitchen and also to No.28 for supplying tables.
Belper’s Winter Food & Real Ale Festival is rapidly becoming an event not to be missed. Many hundreds of folk poured in to the town centre and consequently there were many tired little ones in their parents wake.
Folks from across the churches under the banner of Hope for Belper were on hand for a third year to provide the opportunity for kids to enjoy some Christmas related crafts – tree decorations, cards and masks galore were produced and there have never been so many Marys, Josephs and Shepherds wondering the high street!
Hope for Belper Street Angels were also at the stand, chatting about their support for people finding themselves vulnerable in the wee small hours of a Friday night in town.
It was again a privilege to come alongside the council in working for and loving our town together.
On the evening of Monday 7th October Jo Lambourne and Gareth Greenwood joined the 2nd Belper Guides to talk about food poverty and the way in which it is affecting some of our neighbours around the town.
Jo and Gareth talked about how ‘The Basic Idea’ food-bank project had been set up in response to the credit crunch and that since then hundreds of families and individuals had been helped to get through times of financial hardship and crisis in and around the Belper area.
The Guide Troop were very engaged with the issues involved and asked some very searching questions throughout the evening. They had the opportunity to sort and label many cans and packets that had been recently donated by local churches and schools.
They packed some of these items along with food they themselves had brought along on the evening in to boxes ready to be delivered to their neighbours in need.
Hope for Belper would like to thank them for their generosity in giving both food and their evening toward the project – well done girls!
Thanks also to Rachel Kenning and her team of leaders for inviting us along for the evening.