Gorleston church links up with homeless charity
A new partnership between St Mary Magdalene Church in Gorleston and Hope into Action’s Norwich office will see the work of the homeless charity expand to the East Coast of Norfolk for the first time.
Since 2012, Hope into Action has opened twelve houses in partnership with churches in Norwich and the surrounding area, offering a safe home and supportive community for tenants coming out of homelessness situations. The model involves partnering every house with a local church, which provides volunteers to befriend the tenants and help in practical ways.
The new house in Gorleston, which will house three male tenants, is located in St Mary Magdalene’s parish on the town’s Magdalen Estate. Over the last few weeks, the house has been refurbished and is now ready to receive tenants. It is hoped the first tenant will be able to move in by Christmas.
Rev Matthew Price, Vicar of St Mary Magdalene Church, said, “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Hope into Action. For some years we have been involved in supporting people in homeless situations or on the edge of homelessness and this partnership represents a natural progression for our work as a church.
“Hope into Action’s track record of success in supporting people out of homelessness is excellent and we are excited about joining in with this work. Transformation is at the heart of the good news of the gospel and the Hope into Action model provides a framework in which our church congregation can be involved in and support God’s transforming work in the life of the tenants.”
Tony Gray, Norwich Coordinator for Hope into Action, said, “It is a privilege and joy to be working with St Mary Magdalene Church, a small local church with a huge heart. So much of the positive journey of our tenants has come from feeling part of a community and having trustworthy relationships, and this is what the church provides so well.”
“We look forward to working with local agencies so that we can help by giving a home to some of those who struggle to gain accommodation in the Great Yarmouth area.”
Hope into Action has also employed a new tenant empowerment worker, Catherine Metcalf, who will support the tenants and work alongside the friendship and support group made up of members of St Mary Magdalene church.
Find out more about St Mary Magdalene church here.
Find out more about Hope into Action here.
The pictures show members of St Mary Magdalene Church preparing the house for occupancy, and are courtesy of Anna Heydon.
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