Latest News

Check out the information below on the latest ideas picked up from colleagues, on travels around the Diocese and from social media. 

21st August 2019

Girlguiding Girls Attitudes Survey 2019

Each year, Girlguiding’s Girls’ Attitudes Survey takes a snapshot of what girls and young women think on a wide range of issues. The survey gives girls’ and young women’s voices a platform to be heard and considered at the highest levels of decision-making across the UK. It empowers girls to speak out on the issues that really matter to them and affect their lives today. This major survey, now in its 11th year, canvasses the opinions of over 2,000 girls and young women aged 7 to 21, inside and outside guiding across the UK. Here’s a summary of the 2019 report.


Environmental action:

88% of girls and young women aged 7-21 feel it’s urgent that we all do more to protect the environment.

Girls tell us they’re worried about the environment and want more to be done to protect it — whether that’s through decision-makers listening to them or by having opportunities to take action themselves in their daily lives.


Access to play and sport:


of girls aged 7-10 don't have access to a playground with swings and a slide.

Girls tell us what would encourage them to go outdoors more. We discover that girls want outdoor spaces that are cleaner, safer and easier to access, as well as more coverage of women’s sport on TV


Life online and the media:

45% of girls and young women aged 11-21 feel they need to check their phone first thing in the morning and last thing at night.


Girls tell us they want the internet to be a safer place that’s free from harmful content. They also tell us what pressures they face, including feeling like they have to look a certain way or to always be online.

Bullying and friendships:

79% of girls and young women aged 7-21 have experienced bullying or unacceptable behaviours

Girls tell us they often experience bullying and unacceptable behaviours — from name calling to controlling behaviour from a partner — and how this makes them feel less confident, lonely or less likely to go out.

Skills and education:

64% of girls and young women aged 11-21 think there is too much pressure and focus on doing well in exams

Girls tell us they don’t get enough support at school when it comes to exams, or equal choices in subjects, careers advice and experience. We also find out why girls think there are fewer women in

leadership positions.


You can check out the full report here

9th May 2019

Vacancy-Children & Families Worker 

St Lawrence Church, Long Buckby, Northants NN6 (Peterborough Diocese)

£11,500 to 12,500 a year (Part-time) – depending on experience

The vision of the Church is “Jesus in Everything We Do and Everywhere We Are”.   We seek a committed Christian to join our friendly and welcoming Anglican parish church to initiate and develop our work with children, young people and families. We serve a community of about 5,000 in West Northamptonshire, which has been growing due to new housing and the two primary schools have reached record intakes.


We want the CFW to utilise existing contacts in the Schools and the wider community to connect with children, young people and families and to engage and motivate Church members to support in outreach and mission in Long Buckby.


Candidates should complete the application form (from and send it with a current CV and covering letter to the Church Administrator at or 10 Hall Drive, Long Buckby, Northants NN6 7QU. To find out more about the job or discuss any accommodation needs please contact Chris Banks at


Closing date for applications: Friday 7th June. Interviews for shortlisted candidates will be held week commencing 17th June.


The position is subject to satisfactory references and DBS clearance and is for a 2 year fixed term initially, with a possibility of extension.

9th May 2019

Come & Worship ...

Children's Ministry Residential

Tuesday 11th June - Wednesday 12th June 2019

High Leigh Conference Centre


Jesus said, “become like little children …” .Join folks from St Albans Diocese for a 24-hour residential will exploring creative ways to worship with children – not just on Sunday mornings, but at other times and in other formats. There will also be time for formal and informal discussion and space to develop our own ideas and try new things. The time will finish with a celebration grown together throughout the 24 hours.


Speakers include:

  • Wayne Dixon, from CCI Schools

  • Ruth Harley and Revd Simon Cutmore, on toddler groups

  • Revd Mary Hawes, on worship together on Sundays

  • Kay Morgan-Gurr, on additional needs

  • Revd Mina Munns, on creative prayer

  • Nick Harding will curate a prayer/ideas space

26th April 2019

Lord's Prayer Resources

Going for Growth website


Mary Hawes’ excellent Pinterest site on the Lord’s Prayer


BRF is a great source of tried and tested downloadable ideas.


Barnabasinschools is a site run by BRF and dedicated to resourcing work in schools


And here is a Messy Church resource sheet on the Lord’s Prayer

24th April 2019

C2 Safeguarding Training

Witham Deanery

Time: 1:15pm – 4:45pm

Date: Tuesday 30th April 2019

Location: St Nicolas’ Church, Witham


Braintree Deanery

Time: 1:15pm – 4:45pm

Date: Tuesday 7th May 2019

Location: The Church in Great Notley, Braintree


Chelmsford South Deanery

Time: 1:15pm – 4:45pm

Date: Friday 7th June 2019

Location: Widford Parish Centre, Chelmsford


Waltham Forest Deanery

Time: 9:45am – 13:00pm

Date: Saturday 22nd June 2019

Location: The Parish Church of St Peter & Paul, Chingford Green

Barking & Dagenham Deanery

Time: 5:30pm – 9:00pm

Date: Wednesday 10th July 2019

Location: St George's Church, Dagenham


Colchester Deanery

Time: 9:30am – 13:00pm

Date: Saturday 12th October 2019

Location: St John’s Church, Colchester




C2 Leadership Face-to-Face Safeguarding Training is required for those who have safeguarding leadership responsibilities or responsibility for leading activities involving under 18 year olds and/or adults who may be vulnerable due to age, illness or disability. For example, the person in charge of a youth group will require training to C2 (Leadership) level whereas a volunteer acting as an additional adult at a youth group session, but is never the leader of the activity, would require training to C1 level.


Roles that are required to attend C2 Leadership Face-to-Face Safeguarding Training include, but are not limited to:

  • Authorised Children's, Youth and Families Workers

  • Authorised Evangelists/Evangelism Enablers

  • Authorised Local Preachers

  • Authorised Pioneers

  • Bell Tower Captains

  • Bishops Visitors

  • Children and Families Ministers

  • Choir Leaders

  • Churchwardens

  • Directors of Music

  • Home Visitors

  • Leaders of activities for adults who may be vulnerable due to age, illness or disability

  • Leaders of activities for under 18 year olds

  • Ordinands prior to leaving TEI

  • Pastoral Carers

  • Pastoral Visitors

  • PSRs (Parish Safeguarding Representatives)

  • Safeguarding lead on PCC

  • Safeguarding Leads in religious communities

  • Youth and Children's Pastors

  • Youth Group Leaders

  • Youth Ministers


Please note:

  • The completion of the relevant online safeguarding training course(s) is a pre-requisite for ALL attending this course.

  • Tickets need to be booked to avoid disappointment as there are a limited number of places available. Tickets can be booked by visiting the C2 Training page on the Diocesan website.

  • Those that have attended Church of England C3 level safeguarding training within the last 3 years will NOT need to attend C2 level training.

24th April 2019

More than words ...

A blog post from Catherine Maresca looking at faith formation finding its roots in object, ritual, observance. Knowing through experience. 


"we do introduce them to the signs as we pass through the holidays and holy days of each year. These signs are powerful and rich, and we continue to grow in our understanding of them throughout our lives. To withhold these signs from our young children is to deprive them of the language of faith, and to deprive them of a kind of religious “literacy” that will also allow them to recognize the grace of the signs of other traditions."

24th April 2019

Guide to Education

Can't remember where I picked this up .... happy to credit it. It's Michael Rosen's Guide to Education ...

You get education in schools.

To find out how much education you get, the government gives you tests.

Before you do the tests the government likes it if you are put on different tables that show how well or badly you are going to do in the tests.

The tests test whether they have put you on the right table.

The tests test whether you know what you’re supposed to know.




don’t try to get to know any old stuff like ‘What is earwax?’ or ‘how to make soup’.

The way to know things you’re supposed to know is to do pretend tests.

When you do the pretend tests you learn how to think in the way that tests want you to think.

The more practice you do, the more likely it is that you won’t make the mistake of thinking in any other way other than in the special test way of thinking.


Here’s an example:

The apples are growing on the tree.

What is growing on the tree?

If you say, ‘leaves’, you are wrong.

It’s no use you thinking that when apples are on a tree there are usually leaves on the tree too.

There is only one answer. And that is ‘apples’.

All other answers are wrong.

If you are the kind of person that thinks ‘leaves’ is a good answer, doing lots and lots and lots of practice tests will get you to stop thinking that ‘leaves’ is a good answer.


Doing many, many practice tests will also make it very likely that there won’t be time for you to go out

and have a look at an apple tree to see what else grows on apple trees. Like ants. Or mistletoe.


Education is getting much better these days because there is much more testing.


Remember, it’s ‘apples’ not ‘leaves’.

17th April 2019

1277 - Make Them Count

In the UK, on average a child has 1,277 days between birth and starting nursery school education.  

The Christian church as a whole is the leading national provider of parent & toddler groups.  1277 exists to support these groups as they seek to provide a supportive, safe and fun environment that is welcoming to all, and which demonstrates God’s love at the heart of their communities.

1277 was established in 2009 and brings together representatives from church denominations and other Christian organisations to coordinate strategic thinking, to signpost (and sometimes to develop) relevant resources/events and to facilitate networking between practitioners.

17th April 2019

Vacancy - Children's & Young Persons Worker

The Parish Church of St Nicolas, Witham, Essex, is looking for the right person with the heart and desire to reach out to and work with the children and young people in our community.  We are seeking someone to lead and develop this important ministry, with particular emphasis on areas of new housing and housing estates.  Key to this role are:


  • Working towards a vision of ‘bringing hope and being community’ by seeking to enable children and young people to be empowered by the presence of God, and shaped for the purposes of God

  • Maintaining ministry links across the whole parish including with St Nicolas’ Parish Church and Hope Community (a Fresh Expression of Church planted from St Nicolas’ Parish Church)

  • Assisting in the pastoral oversight of the children, young people and families with whom the Church has contact


Salary £10,000pa for 15 Hours per week Part-time. 

All enquiries in writing please to

Closing date for applications Monday 29 April 2019

12th March 2019

Vacancy - Growing Faith Enabler

Growing Faith Enabler, 2 year fixed term appointment, to work alongside Mary Hawes as Growing Faith is activated. The role is to enable Dioceses and parishes to change their thinking and practice in line with GS2121 and the paper which went to the House of Bishops.

26th February 2019

Faith in the Nexus

Interim report from Faith in the Nexus, a research project looking at ways in which schools can/are connecting with families and churches. Key questions emerging from the research include:


  • In what ways can church primary schools increase the confidence with which families support children’s exploration of faith and spiritual dimension of life?

  • How can religious education and worship in school to include opportunities to support school families and staff?

  • What is required to enable church and church primary school relationships to be sustainable?

  • How can the local Christian community nurture church school families, particularly in areas of socio-economic deprivation?

  • What does the concept of church mean to church school families?

26th February 2019

Playfully Serious

Church Army Research into Messy Church 

This research has discovered evidence to CELEBRATE

  • Messy Church is reaching families who are new to church

  • Messy Church is growing disciples

  • Messy Church is modelling new patterns of leadership

  • Messy Churches are developing and maturing as church

Ongoing CHALLENGES exist around how

  • Messy Church leaders are over-stretched and under-supported

  • Messy Churches can find creating a culture of discipleship demanding

  • Messy Churches are often vulnerable and under-resourced

  • Messy Churches live with ambiguity over what it means to be church


So what MORE has been learned?

  • Being intentional about discipleship is important

  • Meeting more frequently is not necessarily ‘the’ answer

  • Real community is messy

10th January 2019

Children & Youth Team Leader

St Mary's Loughton


St Mary’s Loughton is a thriving and friendly evangelical charismatic Anglican church in the heart of Loughton. We love integrating the generations and are so looking forward to welcoming the new ignite Team Leader. Our staff team is a fun and creative place to be where we value friendship at the heart of leadership. We are looking for a Children & Youth Team Leader to coordinate and oversee the delivery of ministry to 0-18 year olds known as ignite. The heart of the role is equipping the ignite volunteer team.


Accountable to: The Incumbent of St. Mary’s

Contract: Full Time

Responsibilities & Context: Ignite is the children’s and youth ministry of St Mary’s and is fully integrated into the life of the church family. The role is both about delivering front line ministry and also the overall coordination and oversight for ignite across the age range 0-18. Empowering and equipping the team is the key focus of the ignite Team Leader. There is currently a team of over 45 adults.

Working Week: The working week of the successful applicant will consist of 40 hours including Sundays, with at least one full rest day per week.

Hours of working will be flexible.

Annual Leave: 6 weeks per year plus public holidays. 3.

Remuneration: £24,000 - £28,000 p.a. depending on experience.

Personal Retreat: Up to 5 days a year are allowed for personal spiritual retreat.

Working Context: A personal desk and MacBook Air will be provided within the shared office space in the church.

It is a Genuine Occupational Requirement that the person appointed is a committed practising Christian.

10th January 2019

Children & Young People's Officer

Quakers in Britain

The Children & Young People’s (CYP) Staff Team is part of the Quaker Life department of Britain Yearly Meeting. It supports Quaker meetings’ engagement with children and young people and offers national events for young people.


You will help manage and deliver national events and play a key operational role in CYP programmes that take place as part of annual all-age Quaker gatherings. You will also support the provision of CYP programmes locally and regionally, in particular by overseeing our three-year pilot project that employs two regional youth workers.


This is an ideal role for someone with a youth work qualification and with experience of working with children and young people. If you want to be part of a small team that seeks to maintain and develop opportunities for children and young people in a Quaker context, we’d love to hear from you.

Salary                        £40,900 per annum

Contract                    Permanent

Hours                        Full time – 35 hours per week

Location                   Friends House, Euston Road, London NW1

Closing date:           27 January 2019

Interviews:               4 February 2019


To apply, go to To find out more about our Children and Young People’s work, go to our website at

9th January 2019

It's Just the Toddler Group

Many thanks to Mary Hawes & Dan Jones for this excellent resource on toddlers and church, packed with advice, stories, good practice, information, help and re-assurance about this amazing ministry. 

9th January 2019

Hand in Hand

Children's Ministry Conference

1st - 3rd February 2019

Kings Centre, Eastbourne. 

10th December 2018

Growing up Together

Growing Up Together:  a free inter-generational resource for multi-age households, small groups & communities of faith committed to growing up together in worship, witness & service, by Cath James, funded by the Centre for Theology and Ministry.

Growing Up Together comprises an overview of the place of rites and rituals in the lives of young people & their communities plus liturgical resources for marking these significant occasions & contains resources for recognising and celebrating, in an intergenerational way,

  • A new sibling

  • Starting school

  • The first job  

  • Transition from adolescence to young adulthood

  • Leaving home


Download for FREE via Growing Up Together.

10th December 2018

Being Good News in Schools

Bridging the Gap between Church and School

10.00am – 4.00pm

Saturday 2nd February 2019

Bean Academic Centre, Brentwood School


An opportunity to hear from headteachers, primary & secondary school workers, clergy and young people about bridging the gap between church and school.

Cost : £12 (before 20th December), £15. Sandwich lunch included.

Info :

22nd October 2018

Pray for Schools


Pray For Schools is developing a UK-wide network of prayer groups to support schools by praying. The network includes; CARE, the Association of Christian Teachers (ACT), Free Churches Group, Youth for Christ, Scripture Union, Prayer Spaces in Schools and Open the Book. PFS encourage young people from all around Europe to pray for their school joining Christians young and old and taking part in PrayDay on Tuesday 20th November.

20th September 2018

European Puppet & Creative Arts Ministry Festival

Rugby College (CV21 1AR)

Friday 2nd & Saturday 3rd November 2018


The European Puppet and Creative Arts Festival is for anyone, adults and children, who want to learn more about sharing good news using creative skills. It features 80 workshops & main stage performances, competitions & a range of creative arts resources.

20th September 2018

Girls' Attitude Survey 2018

Girl-guiding is the leading charity for girls and young women in the UK. They have 100,000 volunteers who work to make a positive difference in girls and young women’s lives giving them the chance to discover their full potential and encourage them to be a powerful force for good. Find out more about their annual research into girls and young women’s views on subjects ranging from education to personal safety and wellbeing. Fascinating reading!

31st August 2018

Good Childhood Report 2018


The Children's Society has just published the Good Childhood Report for 2018. Findings include:

  • Pressure to fit in with society's expectations is making children unhappy

  • Alarming numbers of children are self-harming

  • Non-stop comments about appearance are harmful to girls' well-being

  • Outdated gender stereotypes are damaging to boys' and girls' happiness

  • Family relationships are particularly important for girls

Access the report summary here - including its helpful advice for parents.

23rd August 2018

The Power of Storytelling


Great article by Traci Smith on the power of storytelling. Philip Pulman says, “After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.” This article explores:

  • The Positive Power of Storytelling

  • Using Storytelling in a Church Setting

  • Using Storytelling to Build Community in Small Groups

  • Larger Storytelling Events

  • Intergenerational Storytelling

Well worth a read.

21st August 2018

Kin & Country

Growing up as a child in the armed forces

“For me, when you’re older it’s not so much about making new friends, it’s about the potential for messing up your life” – child’s view of childhood in the armed forces. Full report from the children’s commissioner.

20th August 2018

A is for Activist

A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara

Seven Stories Press; Brdbk edition (12 Dec. 2013)

ISBN 978-1609805395

A is for Activist is an ABC book with a difference. Just as heart-warming and just as engaging as traditional ABC books, but with a joyful emphasis on justice and equality. 28 pages, written for families who want their kids to grow up with open eyes and open hearts and written with alliteration, engaging illustrations and a call to see, hear and act. A great book for young children of all ages.

10th August 2018

Looking after your Mental Health

Alice James & Louie Stowell

Usborne, £6.99 (picked up a copy for £2.99 online)


A great book addressing mental wellbeing for children & young people. Probably most appropriate for Y6-Y8’s. Well-written, appropriate language & not afraid to tackle some tricky issues such as how and why we feel as we do, with sections including; friends & family, sex & romance, depression & anxiety and eating disorders.


There’s some really helpful guidance on helping young people learn to like their own company,

feelings, puberty and friendships, gender dysphoria, social media, sexting, cyber-bullying, toxic friendships, consent, family breakdown and eating disorders. The book tackles these issues in a sensitive, informed and non-patronising way, offering practical strategies.


It’s a big book covering big issues and as such young people will probably dip in and out of it. I know some schools have ordered copies and some parents are using this as a resource to help with transitions from Y6 to Y7. This book is a great introduction to mental health, filled with no nonsense, straightforward, practical, informed help for young people as they understand, appreciate and embrace their mental wellbeing.

9th August 2018

Childhood Vulnerability - 2018 Report

The Children’s Commissioner has published her 2018 report into Childhood Vulnerability. The headlines are:


  • 2.1 million children in England – one in six – are living vulnerable lives due to complex family circumstances. 

  • 1.6 million ‘invisible’ children are living in vulnerable situations but receiving no known support or help from the system.

  • Report estimates 825,000 children are living in a family with domestic violence and that over 100,000 children are living in a family with the so-called ‘toxic trio’ of domestic violence, mental health and alcohol or substance abuse.

The report estimates that 2.1 million of England’s 11.8 million children – one in six – are living in families with risks so serious that they need some level of help. The study also warns that for 1.6 million of those vulnerable children, the support is effectively ‘invisible’ – we don’t know if they are actually getting any coordinated help, despite the difficulties they are growing up with. Some of the risks these children face include parents with mental health problems or parents who are alcoholics or have substance abuse problems. The 2.1 million children growing up in families with these complex needs includes:

  • 890,000 children with parents suffering serious mental health problems

  • 825,000 children living in homes with domestic violence

  • 470,000 children whose parents use substances problematically

  • 100,000 children who are living in a family with a “toxic trio” (mental health problems, domestic violence and alcohol and/or substance abuse)

  • 470,000 children living in material deprivation

  • 170,000 children who care for their parents or siblings


​Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, responding to the report, said:

“Over a million of the most vulnerable children in England cannot meet their own ambitions because they are being let down by a system that doesn’t recognise or support them – a system that too often leaves them and their families to fend for themselves until crisis point is reached."

6th August 2018

CPAS Resources - Disciplekit

The latest resources from CPAS are listed here. Resources include;


  • GLOBALkids – Children’s Materials with a Heart for Mission

  • Games With A Purpose – games with learning points for working with groups aged 9 and above.

  • Pearls, Pigs and Parties - stories to teach us to listen carefully, to love and forgive

  • Go Teach: - teaching materials for children in the early years of schooling

  • Servanthood for Kids – The Life of Jesus & the meaning of service

  • CROWNED (Elementary) - how to live like royals by having the kinds of attitudes Jesus tells us to have in Matthew 5

1st August 2018

Kitchen Table Project

Just 50% of children growing up in Christian homes will keep their faith as adults. The Kitchen Table Project is a growing movement of mums and dads supporting each other, sharing ideas and encouragement, inspiring faith in our children. The project is the start of a conversation which includes resources and ideas to help in the journey of discovering how we can nurture faith at home.

Care for the Family start this conversation by inviting mums and dads to run an Inspire session to start thinking about faith at home. The Inspire Session is an opportunity to meet with other parents to chat about children and faith and figure out together where in the world to start!

You can download everything you need for an inspire session here 

1st  August 2018

Chaplaincy - A Ministry of Presence

Thursday 1st November 2018

10.00am - 3.30pm

hosted by Brentwood Preparatory School

A one-day conference for all those engaged in all areas of chaplaincy. Keynote Speakers include; 


  • The Rt. Revd. Stephen Cottrell - Bishop of Chelmsford

  • Dr. Edward Kessler MBE - Founding Director of The Woolf Institute, Cambridge


To book a place click here 


Supporting Transitions

31st July 2018


Here's a poster from Beacon House Therapeutic Services with tips on how to help anxious children negotiate the transitions at the start and end of the school year. It might be useful for families in your context.

Faith in the Family

30th July 2018

A really helpful presentation bringing together many of the stats and facts around faith in the home. Click here to visit the website with the presentation.

Kids Matter

30th July 2018

Across the UK, family life is in crisis in areas of poverty and disadvantage, with children growing up with considerable emotional as well as material deprivation. Parents struggling with poverty are often isolated and are at a higher risk of mental health problems which further undermine parenting. Studies show that good parenting programmes positively impact child behaviour and parental mental health through supportive group relationships and robust parenting input.


Kids Matter train, equip and support local church and charity leaders to deliver an 8 week parenting programme designed specifically for use with people of all faiths and none. The Kids Matter programme is evidence based and found to be effective in improving parent-child relationships, parental confidence and overall child behaviour. It is delivered by local providers and relationships with potentially isolated parents are continued beyond the end of the programme.


Run by the local church and Christian community leaders, the model is adaptable, accessible and cost effective to set up and run. In partnership with Kids Matter, churches and Christian community groups can establish a parenting programme to support hard to reach families in their neighbourhood.



Training, resources, supervision and support are provided right from the start and once the programme is up and running.



Starting a Kids Matter programme is something any church that wants to help strengthen family life in their community can do. To get involved, get in touch with Kids Matter today:


T 0303 040 1068

Stewardship No. 20190575

Global Neighbours - School Accreditation 

26th July 2018

Global Neighbours is Christian Aid's school accreditation scheme, run In partnership with the Church of England’s Education Office. It aims to encourage a deeper understanding of global injustice and the Christian response to it in primary school pupils across England.