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Reasons to be cheerful

I’ll admit it. Reading this blog may at times seem a bit dispiriting. Quite often there are references to awful things we need to be alert to, along with advice and guidance about how to tackle them. Although I do try to lace these items with a few humorous anecdotes along with some sporting or obscure cultural commentary, I guess there is a sense that the column is constantly reminding readers to be observant – to recognise, respond, record and refer.

So for this last blog before the summer break, and with thanks to the title of Ian Dury’s 1979 hit single, here are some reasons to be cheerful:

During the last church year,

  • Our safeguarding training has now been made widely available online – easy to access without travel

  • In London District, the safeguarding team has almost doubled its capacity in the last six months

  • Safe recruitment guidance has been re-drafted – shorter and more concise for those of you responsible for recruiting new volunteers or office holders, and now awaiting Methodist Council approval

  • Greater engagement with survivors has been achieved and we’ve published a useful study guide for churches

  • Development of new Domestic Abuse guidelines for the Church after an overwhelming response to a webinar attended by over 500 people.

  • Hosted three anti-bullying webinars

  • A paper on the Theology of Safeguarding was endorsed by Conference

  • There has been more sharing of our safeguarding knowledge and experience with the Church overseas.

And in the parallel universe that is London SE25, a new manager, younger players and an ambition to rise above mid-table mediocrity!

I won’t mention you know what for fear of jinxing what might be some hopeful statistical data. So the last word this week is down to Ian Dury. His ‘Reasons to be Cheerful’ is a list of things that made him happy, and one short stanza reads:

A bit of grin and bear it, a bit of come and share it,

Your welcome we can spare it

And yellow socks

Don’t quite get the socks non-sequitur but it may raise a brief smile. Have a good summer. See you in September.

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