Building Bridges, Tonge Moor

CRCW – Alison DaltonAlison Profile picture

The Building Bridges Project is based at The Church at the Centre, the name adopted by Tonge Moor United Reformed Church in 2006. Since 2007 (initially under the leadership of CRCW Pat Oliver) the partners in the project, the church and organisations within the neighbourhood sought to foster mutual respect and support between generations and to help develop the Centre into a hub for the community. Pat Oliver was called to Avenue St Andrews, Southampton in December 2013. 

Alison, who started in April 2015 said: “Since my Induction in May 2015 the Building Bridges Project has been very busy.  During 2016 we celebrated, with our wider community, the 10th birthday or our new building. We also began our project to help raise awareness of hate crime, as the demographics here are changing.  This has led to a successful poster competition with our local schools, a well-attended community celebration to explore and value all that we bring from our cultures and have fun together, a powerful drama developed by some local children aged 11-12 years and more.  We have continued to work with and support local community groups including our Big Local Partnership. Alison is the current chair.  The latest Council Review has led to many changes at the Children’s Centre which we are helping the Lunch Club through and rethinking ways we can continue our aim to make the Children’s Centre a Hub for all.  We also have launched Generation Re-United an intergeneration after school activity club based at the Centre which has been so successful we are looking to use more space in the new year.’

Current aims for the Building Bridges Project:

1. To foster mutual respect, trust, support and kindness between generations, faith and cultures

  • Aimed at countering alienation in younger people and fear in older people or those of other cultures or faiths
  • Special focus on developing community events, to celebrate the diversity of Tonge Moor

2. To help to develop the Centre into a hub for the community

  • By promoting/developing community support projects e.g. the Mobile Pantry
  • Developing volunteering opportunities

3. By working with other groups, to support community activities, addressing needs in the area

  • e.g. Fusion, the Big Local Partnership, the UCAN Centre
  • Making best use of limited resources
  • Avoiding duplication/competition between partners

4. That (by the end of the project) everyone in the local community will feel that Church at The Centre is available for them.

To find out more about Alison, here is her latest CRCW reflection: The run up to Christmas for a Church Related Community Worker.