Living Stones normally supports children and families educationally, this is very much a local, ‘face to face’ ministry.
So what’s been happening since lockdown?
At Easter, the council donated Easter eggs which Hannah was able to deliver, but she says the main need hasn’t been for food as benefits are mainly already in place. Hannah was able to quickly access some local funding which meant she could put together ‘Boxes of Hope’ or ‘Fun Boxes’ as she likes to call them, for sixteen families. They sound wonderful! They contain paper of different types, pencils, felt tips, little pots of paint, paint brushes, glue, pipe cleaners and other creative bits and pieces, colouring sheets and games such as ‘Dobble’ and Snakes and Ladders. Hannah has asked the families to send her photos of their creations and has been encouraged by the results. She has also provided some outdoor activities such as ‘ring toss’ and ‘skittles’.
Hannah is continuing to coach one child remotely and is working on how to share ‘transition’ sessions with a group of nine year six children. She hopes to make a video with her own teenagers as part of this. She has recently been struck by someone saying that parents are the biggest benefit to children at a time of transition and is beginning to think about devising some resources for parents on this theme. She has made a ‘little Sunday school video’ which includes a craft, which she has also shared with the school, and hopes to do more of these.
Thanks Hannah! We wish you well.
Hannah founded a charity called ‘Living Stones Educational Trust’ in 2018. She was already working with the families on the estate where she lives in Manchester. Recognising that many of the parents were not confident in supporting their children educationally, she began a Homework Club which eventually moved into local church premises. Gradually people from the church became involved and, as well as the Homework Club, Hannah and a little team of mainly retired volunteers lead ‘Open the Book’ assemblies and a Board Games Club. Hannah also does one to coaching, supports the R.E. curriculum and does work on transition to secondary school with groups of year 6 children, using Scripture Union’s ‘It’s your Move’.
If you’d like to find out more about Living Stones Educational Trust (and for lots of photos of what’s in the Fun boxes) have a look at their Facebook page.