During Lent, “Churches Together” in our village are doing this…
Every Tuesday night, we meet together, and after enjoying mugs of soup and bread rolls, we listen to a speaker from a different charity working somewhere in Leicestershire.
Last Tuesday we had a great time with Keith Lawson West, who spoke about “Emmaus”, the charity which works with the homeless. Check out their website [here] They have a property in nearby Hinckley, which currently provides a home for 6 ‘companions’. One of these, Barry, came with Keith.
He told of his past life – and how Emmaus had helped him turn his life around. It was really challenging, and very moving to hear him. Many people feel that such projects are just a bottomless pit for people’s charity – but I was most impressed by these facts…
A Social Return on Investment (SROI) study carried out in 2012 by social and economic company Just Economics forecasts that each year Emmaus Communities generate £11 in social, environmental and economic return for every £1 invested. [To get a return of £4 for every £1 is considered good going by many charities.]
Emmaus is really giving back to society, generating significant savings to the taxpayer. For the 21 UK Communities included in the research, the study forecasts that the present value of savings to local and national Government stands at almost £6 million per year.
Key outcomes for Government from Emmaus’ work include fewer rough sleepers, fewer people claiming benefits, reduced substance misuse, reduced crime and fewer health problems.
The report finds that Emmaus Communities successfully provide a place for people in vulnerable housing situations to rebuild their lives by offering them meaningful work and support.
I’m hoping tomorrow night’s event will be just as good!