It was a great joy for me to be able to meet Bishop Charles and Penny Heard from our link diocese in January. They both attended my consecration and I had a lovely conversation with them the day after when we discussed, amongst other things, a range of much needed projects that they are hoping to establish in The Highveld Diocese. We are very hopeful that a group of them will be able to come to visit Monmouth Diocese in 2021.
I am aware that the people of this diocese have been very generous in the past in supporting various projects highlighted in the Lent Appeal and it seems entirely appropriate at the beginning of my ministry here that we further strengthen our link with The Highveld by raising money during Lent for their hoped-for projects.
There are four areas of work that they would like money for.
Their literacy programme: Active Readers encourages children of all ages to read more and expand their English vocabulary. They want to reach more children and be able to offer the programme twice a month. This will require money for two volunteers, transport to the sites and stationery. Approx £1,575
A computer centre where children and adults can learn to become computer literate. This requires computers, internet connection, training trainers, security, chairs, tables and stationery. Approx £5,225
An Early Childhood Development Centre at one of their sites which will cater for children from the ages of 3yrs to 5yrs. Establishment costs would be for equipment for the school, training of teachers, and stipends for three volunteers: two teachers and a cook/cleaner. Approx £9,700
All the above projects and more need constant supervision and monitoring. Although there is a new project manager, he needs to move from site to site monitoring and attending meetings and does not have a personal vehicle. He has to rely on public transport which is costly and time consuming. Transport is also needed for the distribution of food, clothing and equipment. The cost of a mini-van, a maintenance plan for between 3 and 5yrs, licensing and petrol is Approx £13,122.50
The total costs come to £29,622.50
I hope that individuals and churches will feel able to be generous this Lent so that we can support some life-changing programmes for our sisters and brothers in The Highveld.
Please make your cheques payable to “Monmouth Diocesan Board of Finance” with a note stating that this is for the 2020 Appeal and send to the Diocesan Office, 64 Caerau Road, Newport, NP20 4HJ.