Janie Oliver, ECCR’s Director, reflects on her time at ECCR, as she moves on to a new role.
Today is my last day at ECCR after nearly 2 years. As chapters come to an end and new ones begin, one inevitably takes time to pause and reflect. It’s been a time of huge change but I’m so unbelievably proud of everything we’ve been able to achieve together – just some of the highlights are given below:
- We launched Money Makes Change in January 2020 and now have 7 different programme resources. This includes an interactive workshop, Messy Money, our online tool for churches (the Pledge), and our brand-new Bible Study series launched just last week.
- Like so many other organisations in 2020, we’ve had to adapt how we’ve delivered our materials and so we’ve developed online Money Makes Change resources (taster sessions, and a 3-week workshop series) and so far have delivered 18 different sessions to 210 people. 93% of people who came to these events said they felt inspired or equipped to take action.
And here’s an example of feedback from someone who attended our online workshops:
“An excellent course, with lots of thought-provoking material and opportunities to discuss ethical matters about money that are not often discussed in everyday life.”
I’m especially excited by stories of those who engage with the programme and then go on to tell others and make a change in their community. Like, a participant in our July online workshop who is training to be a local preacher in the Methodist Church. After attending our workshop, she chose to focus one of her circuit services on the ethical use of money and used the Money Makes Change resources to encourage reflection and action. The recorded service was viewed 850 times and counting!
- As a response to the Covid-19 crisis, we were inspired to put on a series of online events called Restoring Hope, during Good Money Week in October 2020. We wanted to explore the relevance of the Christian faith to our financial decisions and the wider economy, and in the process help rediscover hope in these challenging times. Over 8 events, we were joined by 250 people, including an Evening in Conversation with Rowan Williams and Ruth Valerio where we discussed all things faith and finance. Recordings of our evening events can be viewed here.
- We were delighted to collaborate even more closely with Church Action for Tax Justice (CATJ) from mid-2020 when they became an official programme of ECCR, strengthening both entities in the process. Since then, CATJ has had some incredible highlights – prompting questions being asked by Bishops in the House of Lords in November, the development and launch of the Fair Tax Now campaign in January 2021, and both their ‘Fair Tax Now’ report and ‘Tax for The Common Good’ report being debated in the House of Lords last week. Since the launch of the Fair Tax Now campaign, over 200 people have e-mailed their MP calling for a review to the tax system – it’s easy to do with an e-mail already drafted on your behalf. Just click here to take action!
What I’m even more proud and thankful for is that this has been done in the context of a global pandemic by a team who are passionate about living out their faith, through what they do every day when they turn up to work. Thank you to Justin, Rosie, Bryn and the trustees and I wish ECCR all the best going forward. I have no doubt it will continue to go from strength to strength under God’s hand of guidance and blessing.