Message from our new Chair of Trustees

A message from the new Chair of trustees, Rik Child.

AGM

I’m pleased to report that at last night’s AGM of the BHFA I was elected to the office of chair of the board of trustees with a firm majority. I am honoured to have won the backing of members from a wide variety of faith traditions, including Christian, Jewish and Muslim groups and happy to have spoken to so many of you. I would like to thank all those members who placed their faith in my vision of what the BHFA could become.

NEXT FEW WEEKS

Over the next few weeks I’ll be working with fellow trustees and staff in organising the BHFA to ensure it fulfils its aims and objectives.

To this end:

  1. I have asked Lev, our Project coordinator to establish a regular membership newsletter to go out every month to our members. This is to keep members better informed over the progress of the BHFA and to encourage greater membership engagement and foster unity.
  2. I am about to reach out to several faith leaders and invite them to join the board of trustees to inject new energy and determination to accomplish our vision. More soon.
  3. I think we should have a vice-chair who represents each of the main faith traditions in our city. This is to ensure that a senior voice from the Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Buddhist groups are heard at an executive level. Obviously, we want to engage other groups too as trustees.
  4. I have organised a meeting with the CEO of Community Works to discuss how to take the Faith Partnership forwards which is our core income stream at present.

With the social and economic uncertainty of Brexit looming, cuts to local authority budgets continuing and the disturbing rise in religious hate crime, it has never been more important for faith groups to unite in delivering social welfare services, ensuring that any gaps in our social safety net are filled and stand together in resisting religious hate crime.

I will do everything I can to ensure the BHFA plays an active role in bring faith groups together in this important work.

Yours faithfully,

Rik Child, Brighthelm

Chair, Brighton and Hove Faith in Action

Advertisements

Annual Interfaith service and Celebrating Faith event video

Here’s an awesome short video put together by our friends over at the Interfaith Contact Group. It shows some fab clips from the annual Interfaith service and the Celebrating Faith event last November.

I’m proud to say this is how we do things in Brighton! Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Bahai and all others not just peacefully coexisting, but celebrating their faith with one another.

Really pleased to hear from Mahmut that there has been no hate crime increase in Brighton since Brexit, despite a sharp rise nationally. I think this goes to show how lovely and liberal we are here by the sea.

Celebrating Faith 2016

Celebrating Faith 2016 

15 November 11am-3pm

St. Peters Church,

Brighton 


We are pleased to announce that following the success of last year’s Celebrating Faith event during international interfaith week, we are holding the event again and it’s going to be bigger and better than before.

Like last year, the focus of the event is on the important social welfare and community building projects faith groups run, be they food banks, homeless services, debt advice, youth groups, lunch clubs for the elderly or hiring out halls and building space for the local community. The scale of networking available at this event is unavailable at any other time of year, and many found it incredibly useful for discovering other faith groups who are running similar or complimentary projects to their own.

We’ll be at an awesome venue this year, St Peters Church, right in the heart of the city, where we will have much more freedom than the Brighton Centre. We’ve also listened carefully to the feedback from last year and have made the following changes:

– A much bigger focus on networking and conversation – the market place will be open all day so you will have the time to speak to anyone you would like to.

– No more workshops – these didn’t really work last time and most of you said you’d prefer to network so we’ve removed them from the agenda altogether.

– A tighter focus on faith – although most of the stalls were manned by faith groups, almost half weren’t and many were surprised to see secular groups that had very little or no connection to faith groups in attendance. This year a higher percentage of stalls will got to faith groups and secular groups who wish to attend will need to demonstrate a solid connection with the work of faith groups.

– A meaningful lunch – the food last year was a bit of a letdown with many missing it entirely. This year we’re asking faith groups to bring food that is commonly eaten in their faith tradition to share and we will carve out the space to eat a communal meal where we sit and eat together, continuing our conversations over lunch. The Real Junk Food Project will also make a significant contribute to the lunch to ensure there is enough food for everyone.

– The interfaith choir will have a better slot – instead of the choir at the end of the day, we’re placing it right after lunch so it can have a proper hearing. The choir are truly wonderful and we’re really lucky to have them back again.

As before, it’s free to attend and free to have a stall slot, so if your faith group would like to book a slot all you have to do is send us an email or use this booking form and you’re in! We’ll sort out all the details with you.

We’ll update this page with further information as we get closer to the date, but please don’t leave it too late to book a slot as we expect we will fill up to capacity quickly given how popular last year’s event was.

Multi-faith vigil for the victims of the Baghdad and Nice attacks

Around 80 people from Christian, Muslim and Jewish religions and none attended a vigil for the victims of terror and hate crime attacks this month.

A few minutes after midnight on the 3rd of July, a terrorist detonated a huge bomb near a busy market in Karrada, Baghdad, killing almost 300 people. This was the deadliest attack in Iraq since 2003 and was part of a global campaign by ISIS to kill as many innocent people as it could during the month of Ramadan. On 14th July a terrorist ploughed his van through a crowd of people celebrating Bastille day in Nice, France, killing at least 84 people and wounding many others.

People have been grieving at the way the world has been tearing itself apart. A Member of Parliament was recently assassinated, hate crimes have soared since the Brexit vote, racial tensions have once again inflamed in the US and terrorists continue to attack innocent people across the world.

We held a multi-faith day time candlelit vigil at All Saints Church on Sunday 17th July and people of faith and of none joined us in lighting 400 candles, mourned the victims and stood in solidarity for a more peaceful and loving world, emptied of the hate and division we so boldly oppose.

This event was organised by Brighton and Hove Faith in Action and supported by the following organisations:

cropped-image-2.jpg

AGM – 15th June – Mental Health and Faith

AGM

15th June, 8pm

Progressive Synagogue

6 Lansdowne Rd, Hove BN3 1FF

Special guest speaker: Rev Cynthia Park


All people of faith within Brighton and Hove are invited to our AGM on the 15th June, where we will hear from Rev Cynthia Park, one of the organisers of Peace of Mind, a local faith based Mental Health training group that delivers mental health training for local Churches.

During the AGM we will launch our Mental Health Faith Partnership and we would like you to be part of how this is organised. A significant amount of the AGM will be spent on sharing thoughts and ideas of how this partnership will be organised and run. After this we will invite faith groups to join the partnership by signing a provisional agreement, which will set out the principle aims and objectives.

More details will follow in the coming days, so watch this space!