The Eden team in Arbourthorne, Sheffield has gathered pace over the last 18 months, building relationships with young people through its outreach and clubs and this week is preparing to take part in an exciting city-wide initiative, ‘Make Your City Shine Sheffield.’
Each act will visit a school for one day of the week on rotation, talking about positivity and respect, ending in a massive celebration – Glory Revolution on the Friday.
On Monday, LZ7 launched the Make Your City Shine schools week in Fir Vale School where our Eden Fir Vale team works closely with pupils. “It was a great start to the week and the staff and pupils really got into it!” said Ben Baker, Eden Fir Vale team leader. “The main theme of the day was that everybody is unique, priceless and valuable to God and that we all have a choice in how we treat each other. This was linked with the huge issue of human trafficking and LZ7’s promotion of the A21 campaign.
“The day finished with an after-school Q+A session with the band which led to some great conversations and gave an opportunity to explore some of the topics from the day in a bit more detail.”
Eden Arbourthorne and Norfolk Park is overseeing the Newfield School part of the Make Your City Shine initiative, inspiring young people to think about acts of kindness that will make a difference to the people around them.
Eden’s Simon Allison works at this school already, as an external mentor, with a list of 10 students, who have behavioural problems. This job provides a ’tentmaking‘ income stream whilst also giving him quality one-to-one time with young people from the nearby estate, during school hours. The intervention work is extremely effective and recently one young man finished his exams having spent time with Simon. ”It was a total u-turn for him and his Mum is really chuffed. Earlier last year he was asked to leave school because of his behaviour and now he knows he can handle it,” said Simon.
“Because of my links here, I have been able to make sure the school was included in the Shine Sheffield events and I know they are going to love it!” he continued.
The Shine Sheffield initiative is working towards ‘creating a movement of everyday people, in everyday places, working to make Sheffield shine!’
Simon and his Eden team have been working closely with young people across the Arbourthorne estate over recent years and events like this are significant opportunities for the young people to hear about Jesus’ love for them, in different formats from people they know know and trust.
Following Shine Sheffield there are plenty of regular activities that young people can get involved with on the Arbourthorne and Norfolk Park estate, through Eden:
On Wednesdays they have young leaders Christian ministry training (left), “we are currently training five young people we have worked with before in discipleship groups,” said Simon, Eden Arbourthorne team leader. ”They are learning all aspects of Christian youth ministry, over six months, which will eventually give them autonomy to work in church as young leaders. Then we plan to run another course, using the young people who have already finished the course as leaders.
“Also on Wednesdays, one of our leaders Andy Todd, is running a kid’s club 3.15 – 4.45 pm that’s aimed at primary school children, aged 6 to 11 years which involves lots of fun and games, alongside Christian teaching and worship.
“On Fridays the Vine Youth Project is run 7 – 9 pm, for ages 11 – 18 and this is a safe place where young people can come and hang out, use the internet cafe, Xbox, Wii, pool, come and listen to music and dance.
But it doesn’t stop there! Over the summer they are working on the completion of the recording studio and an internet suite which will double up as a young leaders training room.
Please pray for the team as they invest in the lives of the young people on this estate and in particular at the school events during the week ahead.