At the end of last year it was reported that the Oldham YCW Group had been working through the SEE - JUDGE - ACT Method and the young leaders decided that they would help their local Women’s Refuge - a place where women and their children can take refuge when they are suffering from domestic violence and abuse.
These refuges are vital lifelines for many women and in the run-up to Christmas many victims have to spend time away from family and friends in order to stay safe.
The refuge in Oldham has 22 women and 24 children. The Group were aware that the refuge did not have very much and so it was an opportunity to make a meaningful donation of things which they need and maybe a few treats as well.
The young leaders had a meeting and came up with ideas as to how best they could help the families in need at Christmastime, aware of the fact that there would be restrictions as there are many regulations in place to ensure the safety of the women and children.
In the end they decided to fill stockings and gift bags full of goodies for the women and children in need. With girls and boys aged from 6 months-16 years they had to cater to a wide range of people. With support from their parishioners, donations were made of women’s toiletries and underwear, socks, gloves and scarves for the winter months, toys and games for the kids, and loads of chocolate.
One of the young leaders, Max, reflected on the initiative saying: “A few of our members went along to the refuge before Christmas and gave our donations to them. They were all very grateful. It was fantastic to be able to develop our leadership and organisational skills over the weeks and months we’ve been planning this. We are all looking forward to doing more in the near future.”