But Navca says the Department for Communities and Local Government should be wary…
FaithAction has helped local organisations by providing a much needed avenue for networking. They promote and support relationship building, which in turn helps to build a stronger community of service providers working together.
FaithAction provides current and relevant access to information in a timely manner – keeping us all up to date with issues affecting our local communities, these issues are discussed with the national team and then escalated up to DH and other government bodies.
The Nishkam Centre has been working with FaithAction for over the last 2 years and most recently met with the FaithAction team a few months ago at the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG): Faith and Society Welfare to Work meeting.
This was a great opportunity for faith-based organisations (FBOs) to offer their views on the Governments Work Programme and how there had been too much focus on the outcomes by mainstream providers. FBOs tended to be more trusted by individuals as there was a clear focus on helping them first and foremost by creating relationships, understating the bigger picture and meeting their holistic needs. FBOs demonstrated how, without particular focus to do so, they created employment and opportunities through volunteering, mentoring and uplifting society through indirect means such as shared resources and values.
FaithAction provided opportunities to raise local/national concerns & influence policy. As a result we have been able to highlight the strength and value that FBOs have to offer.
I have the greatest of admiration for the team at FaithAction. I first got to know them when I saw something on their website enquiring about the types of pressure and difficulty we faced in our work. I sent a huge e-mail back with information about all the problems we have had particularly with funding and sustainability. Since then we have become more involved with FaithAction and seen how much impact they are able to support us in having. We have been able to meet with Felicity and Daniel, and talk about issues and ways of moving forward, and their advice has been a huge help.
One of the biggest impacts that FaithAction has had, is in providing us with opportunities to meet people in the Department of Health and central government that we would never had access to without them. I attended a meeting with the Deputy Director at the Dept of Health and it was really useful to have the opportunity to discuss the many ways that domestic abuse impacts on health and health services, and the ways in which we can work together to overcome the negative impact. My Deputy had the opportunity to speak to an All Party Parliamentary Group about the impact of domestic abuse on children and young people. We would never have had either of these opportunities without FaithAction.
To sum up, FaithAction are a link, between the most strategic decision makers and the people working at grass roots level who have the voice of the service users they are supporting. That link is really important to enable decisions that impact people, to be influenced by those that they will affect. Well done FaithAction. You are the right people in the right place and certainly there for such a time as this when so many decisions are being made that have a long term impact.