Given's story

Given's story

When Given* was three years old, her parents divorced. Given’s mother then took her five children to live with their grandmother. Sadly, life continued to be a struggle and providing the most basic necessities was a challenge. Eventually, Given’s mother, overwhelmed with the responsibility of caring and providing for her children, ran away, leaving her children under the care of their ageing grandmother.

Abel Dreams of What the Future will Hold

Abel* is 15 years old and has never known his parents.  Abandoned as a baby, he was left on a railway track, helpless and alone. By the grace of God, an older couple, the Bandas, found Abel and took him into their home, where he has lived ever since.  Although they were kind enough to rescue Abel, the Bandas themselves live in extreme poverty and have had difficulty in providing for all of the household's needs.

Africa's drought- making it personal

Last Friday we had the monthly Hands on Deck meeting here at the hub. This is when news and updates from individuals and communities are shared. George had just returned from a brief trip to the new communities Hands is supporting in Swaziland. The drought has hit these communities very badly, with many children forced to drink water from a stagnant pool where cattle also drink.

Lunch arrangements for the Hands at Work gathering

We are all really excited that It's now under a week until our Hands at Work gathering. We will be meeting at St. Luke's Church, St Albans on the 28th November 10am-4pm. Before Saturday we ask that you do two things:

Firstly, lunch...
Firstly, we are planning on doing a bring and share lunch. Can we ask that you all bring a sweet or savoury dish to share please.

Secondly, please RSVP...
Secondly if you haven't already can you RSVP using the link below.…

We look forward to seeing you all there.

Two weeks to go until our Hands at Work gathering

 We are really looking forward to seeing you all there.

Firstly can we ask a favour...

If you know anyone who you think this event might be of interest to, please do invite them.

Secondly, please RSVP...
Although it's an informal event and you don't need to pre-book your seat, it's still really helpful for our planning to know rough numbers. Could you please take 10 minutes to let us know how many will be coming in your group by registering for the event on the link below:

Hands at Work gathering on the 28th November 2015

Exciting news! On Saturday 28th November from 10am until around 4pm you are invited to a Hands at Work gathering.

It will be hosted in St Albans (it's the same location as last year if you came.)

Map here:,-0.3171659,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x48763eea2f089937:0xaae0bf70e6e99542

The format will be a bit different to last year but will cover:

What's happened in Africa this year

What's happened in the UK this year, including progress against 1,2,3,4

A chance to learn more about Partnerships and how we want these to develop.

A look ahead to the challenges set for 2016.

In the afternoon we plan to run informal workshop sessions for those interested in:
Volunteering in Africa for a year - or those who might want to challenge a friend or family member to step out.
Those leading a team or going on team visits
Probably one on partnership for those who are looking to help their partnership go deeper or are interested in a new partnership.

We're relaxed on the details, particularly the workshops. We'll respond to the needs of people attending to make sure it's valuable.

We'll also sing, pray and enjoy some good coffee and excellent cakes.

If none of the Hands stuff appeals, then come for the cakes!

We'll send some more information out as we run up to the event. In the meantime can I please ask you to extend personal invites to people you know who this might appeal to.

Please pray for:

My name is Alison Dilley and, as well as seven others, I attend the church of St Andrews Biggleswade and belong to the youth group called The Room. I have recently finished my A-Levels in Geography, English and Psychology and have applied to read English at university in the September of 2015.

George Snyman in the Church Times

'We look back and say we were at our happiest when we literally had nothing." There were three waves of the AIDS pandemic. The first wave was when people got infected, called the invisible wave. The second wave was when thousands of people started dying. The third wave is what Hands at Work is involved in now, caring for the orphans that were left behind.

Barefoot to Swaziland by Jane Newsome

 On one of the hills overlooking the community there is a full size labyrinth, marked out with slate, the narrow pathways filled with gritty sand. The idea is to walk the labyrinth slowly, following the paths that lead almost to the centre but not quite, then almost back to where you started but not quite, until eventually, with perseverance and patience, you reach the centre. It is a way of slowing down, of centring prayer,and of praying with mind and body.