Media Release :
Floating Boatyard gift to Waterways Chaplaincy
That Britain’s rapidly growing Waterways Chaplaincy network is now making an impact in both rural and urban communities is reflected in a generous gift from London’s Floating Boatyard www.floatingboatyard.london. The Floating Boatyard is a worker-owned cooperative with a charitable focus and the chaplaincy is very grateful for their recent recognition and donation. The gift will be well used.
Waterways Chaplains, walking stretches of towpath around the country are there to support all who live, work or take their leisure on, or immediately around, Britain’s rivers and canals where social conditions for some are often not as relaxed and delightful as many imagine.
‘We are there for people of any faith or none at all,’ says Senior Chaplain Mark Chester, ‘and the vision for our Waterways Chaplains is to be ‘catalysts’ in the waterways communities, to bring about short and long term personal transformation – emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
‘Starting from an initial trial in the St Albans area we have a growing team of volunteer chaplains, currently over 70 of them. Many are focused on one area but a number also live aboard their own boats and cruise the system. This enables us to cover many of the main arteries of the UK, including the Grand Union Canal, the Kennet & Avon Canal, the Basingstoke Canal and the Wey and Lee & Stort Navigations.
‘Last year we engaged with over 5,000 people in connection with issues relating to boats, finance, family problems, health issues and often things relating to faith and spirituality. This year sees us starting to expand our work further into the London area. With the increasing number of volunteers coming forward we expect to build on 2017 and make even more of an impact.’
Chaplains are volunteers from local churches who regularly visit to walk the towpaths. They are people with a love for the waterways and their communities. Easily identifiable by the clearly marked gilets they wear, they have gained the respect of the Canal & River Trust (CRT) and other river authorities for the support can they offer to those most in need.
1. Waterways Chaplaincy is a chaplaincy of Workplace Matters. Registered charity number 1132125 www.workplacematters.org.uk
2. Any enquires about the Waterways Chaplaincy should be addressed to Mark Chester firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Floating boatyard www.floatingboatyard.london part of the Lee & Stort Collective, a worker-owned co-operative with charitable focus. Enquiries to Olivia Slater email@example.com