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Darwen refugees invite us to ‘imagine’…

Darwen Asylum and Refugee Enterprise (DARE) at Central URC, Darwen, Lancashire, seeks to provide fellowship and support for asylum seekers and refugees in the community. In doing so, the project challenges everyone consider what it means to be a disciple of Jesus in everyday life in a world which can be hostile and cruel, especially to migrants. Daleen ‘ten Cate, URC Missional Discipleship Mentor for Lancashire, explains how the group invites us to ‘Imagine’ what a world of kindness and generosity might look like, and how we, as disciples of Jesus can be part of that vision:

The DARE group have created various challenges under the banner ‘DARE to imagine…’

The first is ‘DARE to garden’. The group now have an allotment and, in groups of six, can meet outside. As long as they socially distance themselves, they can plant and tend their crops together. At the same time, the group is distributing washing up bowls (with holes in the bottom) along with soil and plants so that families can grow their own herbs and vegetables at home.

The second is ‘DARE to learn’. The group has carried on learning English, but have moved all classes online via Zoom. No mean task as many of the ‘teachers’ are retired so have had to learn a whole new way of teaching and technology. In addition, many of the asylum seekers didn’t have the kit to be able to access what’s on offer, so local councillor and faithful volunteer John East organised a grant to buy tablets and the necessary mobile data so that clients could get online.

The third is ‘DARE sings Imagine’. John Lennon’s famous song ‘Imagine’ has been recorded by the members and volunteers of DARE. Mindcheck One Two C.I.C , a local charity, provided DARE with the space and expertise needed for recording through their studio ‘We are noise’. Refugees and friends from Malaysia, Nigeria, Iran, China, Maymar, EIRE, Sudan, Namibia , South Africa and the UK were invited to sing and speak in their mother tongue, and to imagine a better world.

Through this song we DARE you to Imagine the world that you would like to see, and ask you to do small acts to make this world a reality.

“Be the change that you would like to see in this world” Ghandi

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