The Unrecognised Potential of Faith
I may have not been around FaithAction for long, but I have observed something that bugs me a tad.
It’s faith-based organisations (FBOs) not being realised for the potential that they have, whether it being others recognising them or them recognising it themselves. Very often they are what’s going on beneath the surface.
Going through a recent report on the size and reach of FBOs it’s awesome to see just how many people are involved and how many people are influenced. Take volunteering for example. Did you know that in England alone over 1.9m people volunteer with FBOs, and that they help the equivalent of the entire population of Spain every year? In fact, if you take that figure and compare it to the world’s biggest companies, you’ll see that this group of people would be the world’s 4th biggest employer, on par with the entire Chinese Army!
It’s an amazing impact and one that often goes ignored or under used.
In the past, the Government has been actively trying to get the third sector involved, to fill some gaps that have appeared with the scaling back in budgets and services. FaithAction has worked with the Department of Communities and Local Government to distribute grants to faith-based social action projects, we’ve been working with Department of Health to help train around mental health awareness, and now, along with these programmes, they are asking FBOs to influence their decisions and the future of the National Health Service through NHS Citizen.
NHS Citizen is building a way for everyone to have a say in NHS England decision-making and through FaithAction it is opening this to FBO’s.
We are holding two events, in Manchester on October 7th and Birmingham on October 21st, inviting FBO’s to come along and get involved. The events are completely free and the best place to have your voice heard. You’ll also have a chance to meet and hear from officials involved in NHS Citizen, sharing your views directly with them.
I’m excited about these events, I don’t want faith to miss out, I want you to be there if you can.
You can find out more about the events on our Health Portal over at www.faithaction.net/NHSCitizen.