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Trained and ready to go

The current Covid 19 crisis doesn’t mean that we can forget about keeping up to date with our safeguarding training. We will just have to plan to deliver it in a different way. This will mean making more use of online resources, and last month the Connexional Safeguarding Committee gave the go-ahead for a new way of presenting the Foundation Module, which is our basic course for all who work with children and young people, pastoral visitors and local church leaders.

So with some quick joint work over the summer between Learning Network and Safeguarding Team colleagues, we hope to be rolling out a course from the early autumn that you can access from home, which will be interactive and led by a trainer that will replicate as far as possible the key features of a face to face course. Keep your eye on District communications about when the new course is coming to your front room. Regular readers will recall the growing body of evidence that underlines why having our key church personnel kept up to speed with best practice and the freshest thinking is vital.

Still walking

On the hottest day of the year we walked near, but not through, the throng on Margate beach to reach the Turner Contemporary Gallery. And it was well worth it, after a 5 month wait, to visit ‘We Will Walk’, a stunning collection of protest art from the Mississippi Delta, and the state of Alabama in particular. Spanning a time line from the arrival of the first slaves until now, the exhibition featured quilts, paintings and examples of ‘yard art’. This was a form of sculpture or the placing of everyday objects in the backyard to form powerful statements of identity and belief. These artworks were matched with contemporary photos from the 1960s that focused on the freedom marches that were a central feature if the Civil Rights movement – Selma to Montgomery and on to Washington.


With music, poetry and huge current political relevance, this is an exhibition that comes highly recommended. The story of Gee’s Bend, a small community renowned for its quilt making is one for today. When voting was made universal, the ferry that linked this tiny community to the nearest town where you could register to vote was cut, and not re-instated from the mid-1960s for 40 years. The obstacles to voter registration may look different today, but the long walk remains the same.

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