Two Ipswich churches have launched new neighbourhood outreach programs after being awarded grants through Carinity’s inaugural Collaborative Community Projects initiative.
Kruger Parade Baptist Church and Leichhardt Baptist Church are two of 14 churches and organisations around Queensland to have been allocated funding.
The new Collaborative Community Projects funding program sees Carinity partner with Queensland Baptist churches to help fund community outreach programs that will enrich peoples’ lives and assist them reach their full potential.
Central to all the projects is a commitment to conduct projects that relieve or mitigate disadvantage, promote connectivity for vulnerable people, or increase the strength of local neighbourhoods against disadvantage.
Kruger Parade Baptist Church at Redbank will use its funding to offer practical assistance to at-risk people in their community. This includes helping single parents, the elderly and the disadvantaged ensure their bond is returned at the end of their lease, by assisting with the maintenance of gardens at rental properties.
“Our church is surrounded by areas of disadvantage: higher than average unemployment, lower median household income, and a high rate of first nation, refugees and immigrant families. This disadvantage leads to a number of significant issues and can leave families vulnerable,” Associate Pastor Luke Montgomery said.
“Housing is one of the most basic needs for families and yet for many Australians it is increasingly at risk. One in three renters nationally have lost all or part of their bond at the end of their tenancy.
“We aim to mitigate some of this disadvantage by engaging people from our church community into these people’s lives, to provide immediate help through cleaning up gardens and supporting the homeless.”
The church delivered food hampers at Christmas, will provide financial aid, and has implemented a backpack drive to provide disadvantaged families with stationery and school supplies.
Leichhardt Baptist Church will put its Collaborative Community Projects funding towards its Careforce for the Community program, which supports local people experiencing hardship and disadvantage.
Over $350,000 has been allocated towards the first year of Carinity Collaborative Community Projects funding, with a number of projects receiving a commitment of additional support in subsequent years.
“These sustainable ventures range from grocery distribution for homeless people and support for migrants, to community gardens and mentoring disadvantaged families,” Carinity’s Church and Community Outreach Officer Sarah Watterson said.
“This is an exciting initiative which builds on the positive outcomes of the Carinity Innovation Grants, which over 14 years to 2019 saw us support 92 churches to deliver 137 community projects. However, the Carinity Collaborative Community Projects operates on a much larger scale, both in terms of the scope of the projects and the financial assistance we offer.”