Christian Care for Families
Because we are not meeting or holding fundraising events during lockdown I will tell about what Mothers’ Union does worldwide. At the beginning of the pandemic there was an emergency shortage of cash to fund Mary Sumner House in London. This is the centre of Mothers Union worldwide activity. Members rose to the challenge and gave money, just as individuals. Enough was raised to enable the work to go on which was rather wonderful.
We have over 4 million members in many parts of the world and each place has different requirements, so it stands to reason that each branch, diocese and country will have different projects.
There is an excellent little film on the Mothers Union website that shows members in Manchester making up beds in a church hall for rough sleepers to come in from the cold. It shows members from the valleys in Wales making up boxes of toiletries and washing bags for people who have only the clothes that they stand up in. Another branch may be helping women in a village in Africa to earn money in a communal farm so that they can pay for their children to go to school or to pay for their school uniform.
Look on www.mothersunion.org or facebook.com/mothersunion, to learn more about us. We fund reading programmes so that some of our members in outlying parts of the world can learn to read and to handle money. In the past they were not given the chance to go to school just because they are women. They were sometimes cheated out of their wages because they couldn’t count them. Other members in African countries are university graduates who keep in touch with us over the internet. So everything we do has to be adapted to the place where we are. In Littleport we collect money for holidays or days out for families who cannot afford a break. We hold a coffee morning each year, in normal times, to raise money for mothers in other countries. Our money last year, through Ely Diocese, contributed to sending a pig ‘in pig’ to a widow in another country. We have heard that it has done well and that she has been able to give pigs to other widows, increasing their wealth and status in their home towns. It all seems a bit remote from East Anglia but very useful nevertheless.
Like everyone else we have learned to operate quite differently now that we cannot meet together.
Our theme last year was ‘Building hope and confidence’. In 2021 we have added two letters, the theme now reads ‘Rebuilding hope and confidence’. As people all over the world seek to come to terms with loss of all kinds, bereavement and loss of livelihood we will be aiming to join in with those who are working to help.