Allow the Salvation Army Food Service to stay in St. Peter's Churchyard
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A SALVATION Army meal run service for Bournemouth’s homeless has been asked to leave a town-centre churchyard and move almost a mile away. St Peter’s Church in Hinton Road has provided a base for the charity to help the homeless for 20 years. One volunteer, Mary Randall, earned the MBE for her work giving hot food and clean clothes to rough sleepers. The church says it is trying to balance its duty to the needy with its responsibility to keep an attractive churchyard. I have undertaken a bit of research and as I understand that the facts of the story are quite correct.
Please see http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/9273379.Salvation_Army_meal_service_asked_to_leave_church/
As we all know times are hard, for all of us - things are getting tighter for each of us month on month but I have been involved in the supply of food to this service and I know that not just the food but also the interaction with the good people of the Salvation Army has had a very positive effect on the lives of some very unfortunate souls. "There but for the grace of God..............". It seems callous in the extreme to say that they want to "to provide both an attractive churchyard and practical care to the needy." as if they are equal in importance. Nurse Rosemarie Veale, who volunteers with the soup kitchen on Mondays, said: “What is happening to caring Bournemouth?” She added: “Being a trained nurse I am able to help with their medical problems, dressing sore, bleeding feet and leg ulcers and also giving advice on how to obtain any necessary medical help. “We clear up all our rubbish and even wash down the monument in the churchyard in case any soup has been spilt. When we leave, you would not believe 30 people had been there.”
Please sign this petition and write to Andrew Robinson Diocesan Secretary & Chief Executive at the Diocese of Winchester (his email is firstname.lastname@example.org) in the hope that he will pass our concerns to Revd Canon Tim Dakin (the incoming Bishop) and others in authority. Mr Terry (Minister in Charge at St Peter's) says "if I am approached, directly, by someone demonstrating clear difficulties caused by this experimental period then I shall take those views to my council standing committee.” - his email address is email@example.com - perhaps if you feel as strongly as I do about this you might like to drop a note of concern to any or all of the above. But please sign the petition!
Can I just thank everyone who signs - comments are very welcome but please "Play the ball, not the man" - we'll keep this dignified and caring. :-)