|The Briefing: Monday 14 March 2022View this email in your browser|
|Give – Pray – Welcome|
For the people of Ukraine
The invasion of Ukraine by Russia is a devastating, unjust catastrophe – which has capsized the lives of many millions of people and is challenging the sense of peace and security in which we all have the right to live.
At a time when so many of us were beginning to hope of new freedoms, a brighter future, our hearts have been broken afresh with the news we are seeing and hearing. So many people are yearning to do whatever they can to help the people of Ukraine.
We have been overwhelmed with people asking how they can make a difference – so we have sought to bring all avenues of help together here in this special edition of the Briefing mailing and on this webpage. Please consider how you can help – prayer is a wonderful place to start, but there is so much else we can do as well. During a time when we are focusing so much on how we might live generously as a diocesan family, here are a whole load of ways in which you might be able to make a difference.
Thank you so much for all your kind words, support and love,
Kent Refugee Projects Officer
by 16 March, 9am
On Wednesday 16 March from 9am to 5pm, we will help TeamLovelight to make up ‘necessity bundles’ that will be shipped to Ukrainian people. If you could supply any of the items listed below, please deliver them to Diocesan House by Wednesday 16 March at 9am. We also hope to include prayers in the packs – see below for details.
Female packs: baby wipes, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, sanitary towels, small hair shampoo, soap, flannel/sponge
Male packs: razor, small shaving foam, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, soap, flannel/sponge
Children packs: children’s toothpaste, toothbrush, flannel, baby wipes, small toy if possible.
children’s care packages
We know that children’s hearts have been touched by the devastating images of the war in Ukraine. To help them make connections beyond borders with those children caught up in the conflict, we would welcome short prayers and messages of support and solidarity to be included in the Children Packs that we’ll be packing on Wednesday. Can you help? An example could be:
I pray to Lord Jesus for you and your family
I pray for you and your family
I care for you and your family
I love you and your family
Please write and draw on an A5 piece of paper or card, include first names only, age and simply add ‘England’ as the location.
The Ukrainian children may not be familiar with the English language but we hope they would be able to discern the meaning of the text and pictures. If you can drop them in to Diocesan House by Wednesday morning, that would be great. Alternatively please do post them to us as they will be included in the next shipment of parcels we send to families in Ukraine.
Post to: Domenica Pecoraro, Kent Refugee Projects Officer, Diocesan House, Lady Wootton’s Green, Canterbury CT1 1NQ
USPG and the Church of England Diocese in Europe have also launched an emergency appeal to get aid to people in desperate need because of the invasion of Ukraine. Find out more here
Join our Diocesan Welcome Team We are expecting Ukrainian families arriving via the Ukraine Family Scheme route in the coming days. This scheme allows family members of British nationals, UK settled persons and certain others to come to or stay in the UK. We will be registering offers of support from churches and members of congregations across our diocese who would like to be involved in welcoming them. Specifically, we are looking to build a Diocesan Welcome Team and would like to hear from those who:are Ukrainian/English speakers have teaching experience work coaches or can help with employment linkshave a working knowledge of the benefit system are interested in befriendingare interested in providing homework supportcan help sourcing emergency suppliesWe would also love to hear from those who are unsure on how they can be involved but want to be involved in a Welcoming Journey in some way. For more information, please get in touch with Domenica by email: email@example.com
Keep Praying LentJoin us for our third Lenten Focus – the Widow’s mite. This week our reading is taken from Luke 21:1-7.
Prayer for this week
God of peace and justice,
we pray for the people
of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace
and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for all those
who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort
would draw near to them.
We pray for those
with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment
to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all
your precious children,
at risk and in fear,
that you would hold
and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus,
the Prince of Peace.
Prayer from the Church of England
The Disasters Emergency Committe Appeal
More than two million people have fled the conflict in Ukraine, that figure is rising every day. The Disasters Emergency Committee (made up of 15 UK charities including Christian Aid and tearfund) has launched an appeal to help those affected by the devastating crisis.You can learn more and make a donation here at dec.org.uk
Offer a PrayerOur Diocesan Prayerbank is an online space where prayers are offered and received. It is a person-centred space aimed at providing spiritual healing and comfort to those who are forcibly displaced from their homes. The Prayer Bank page can be easily shared on social media and has the potential to reach anyone who has access to an internet connection.
Ukraine Humanitarian Sponsorship Scheme
The UK government has announced that the “Homes for Ukraine” scheme will open in the near future. In the short term this will allow individuals and families to commit to sponsoring a Ukrainian individual or family to stay with them in their home for a period of not less than six months. Ukrainians who arrive on this scheme will be given leave to remain for three years and will have full access to the labour market, the NHS and to benefits. Volunteers who sign up will have to commit to sponsoring for at least six months and will not be able to charge for rent – but they will be able to receive a ‘thank you payment’ of £350 per month from the Government.
Volunteers will have to be vetted, and those coming to stay will also need to pass security checks. From today, people should be able to register an interest and volunteer in principle to sponsor someone. The Government website link is in the making but we will share it on our Ukraine page as soon as it becomes available.
In time the scheme will be expanded to larger groups and to sponsorship provided by companies, community groups and churches. If you are interested in your church or community group getting involved in this scheme you can register via the Sanctuary Foundation (see below).
Wrap Around Support
The Sanctuary Foundation is a Christian charity asking individuals, community groups, churches, schools and businesses to register their interest in becoming a sponsor when the scheme is developed. To know more about the work of the Sanctuary Foundation and to register your interest please visit the Sanctuary Foundation website. Please note that by pledging support at this stage you are not committing to any specific form of help, as the details of the scheme are yet to be published.