Town Team

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Who we are? 


The TOWN Team has been tasked by the PCC with progressing the TOWN part of the vision statement.  

  • Dramatically increase the number of church members involved in existing church and community work;
  • Establish at least one significant new ministry for a particular local need we feel called to address.
We need more volunteers; can you help us?  If you would like to know more, get in touch with one of us (below) or via the Church Office.
 
Vivien Staunton 01635 48055
Andy Moore 01635 41026
 

What we are doing... 


 

Hospital Garden 15

West Berkshire Community Hospital Therapy Garden


This is a “particular local need”, and one which presented itself very readily!  We have been working hard to help re-create a garden at the West Berkshire Community Hospital (London Road, Newbury).  The garden is beautiful to look at and also provides a therapeutic function for patients with Alzheimer’s and other neurological conditions, as well as those in general convalescence by involving them in tending the garden.  Plants are being incorporated for sensory stimulation to help patients become more connected with the present as well as with past events.
 
St Nicolas will carry the continuing responsibility to provide volunteers, predominantly from our congregation, to care for the garden and to assist hospital staff with patient therapy.  We need people to offer occasional help in spring, to prepare, and in autumn, to clear, and others to come perhaps once a week for an hour through the growing season, weeding, planting and watering.  Those helping with patients will be specially trained and cleared and may spend half a day a week in this role.

 
Hospital Garden 15

Testimonials from the volunteers at the WBCH Therapy Garden


Ruth Robinson

Volunteering at the Therapy Garden


We dig, we plant, we water and prune,

We laugh, we smile, we're busy 'til noon.

Then time for a break, coffee or tea.

A good ol' chatter, it's so stress-free!

A final flurry, we compost the weeds,

We harvest the veg and sow some seeds.

Our work is done, we've reached our goals,

A beautiful garden and happy souls.


Volunteering for the Hospital Therapy Garden has been a joy... come rain or shine, to spend a Monday morning surrounded by beautiful plants and in the company of such a friendly bunch of volunteers and staff is a true blessing. What a wonderful and uplifting way to start each week!

All our work has been acknowledged with great warmth and heartfelt appreciation by those who take time to stroll through or sit awhile amongst the dazzlingly displays. Knowing that the upkeep of the garden brings the patients, their visitors and the staff such pleasure cannot fail to lift our spirits and make us smile. It is such a privilege to be part of this worthwhile project. Thanks to all who had the passion and vision to make it a reality.

Chris Catton

Following my retirement in 2013 I was approached by an old friend, Viv Staunton, who said “you like gardening, don’t you”? I agreed and so joined her team of volunteers in this amazing project. I was unaware of the enormous garden which had become overgrown and sadly neglected. Having only a small garden of my own it has given me a focus and a great chance to indulge my hobby at no personal expense! It’s been great to make new friends in such a lovely team who are glad to share their knowledge. The staff, patients and their families are delighted with the results which make all our efforts worthwhile. Apart from the regular maintenance, there are still interesting projects to tackle so please do join our “happy band” in this rewarding venture.

    
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Newbury Street Pastors - Marcia Wadham


Being a prayer pastor for Newbury Street Pastors certainly has its challenges. Staying up until 4am on a Saturday night is not always easy. But knowing that you are playing an important part in a ministry which is really making a difference in your town certainly makes it all worthwhile. While the Street Pastors are out meeting party-goers and others enjoying the night time economy in the town centre, we prayer pastors remain back at base praying for the work and providing practical support, like making hot drinks and preparing hot food for the team when they come back for their mid-shift break, at around 1am. We may not get to experience the buzz of being out talking to people, but looking through the prayer book and seeing all the answers to prayer we have seen over the past four years is reward enough to carry on.

    
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Loose Ends Volunteering - Graeme Coulam


Volunteering at Loose Ends has been interesting and rewarding in many unexpected ways. Obviously it is nice to think that you are providing a valuable meal to people who might not otherwise have food for the day, but actually many of the people who come to Loose Ends are not necessarily hungry or homeless, but they use it as a safe place to meet socially. So it's not just about providing food, but about providing a venue where people feel safe and welcomed. That often feels like a more important contribution.
It has also been good getting to know the other volunteers. I had expected I might spend more time with those using the service, but it doesn't quite work like that. But you do get time to chat to the other volunteers who come from all over the region to help. It's amazing how word of Loose Ends has spread.
It is brilliantly run, and there's no pressure to volunteer if you haven’t got time. The rota goes round and you add your name if you're free, and it is very nice to know that you can help when you're able and not feel guilty if you have to say no. I think a lot of people are put off volunteering because they are afraid they will be dragged on to a committee or spend more time than they want to, but Loose Ends isn't like that. Of course, if you want to get heavily involved you can, but there is no obligation.
Oh and one more thing, if they happen to over cater – you never know who is going to turn up – you often end up getting a delicious lunch (or breakfast) for your effort. That's not a bad return for a couple of hours of volunteering!

  

Mandy Maskell, 16/06/2015

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