Faith in Queens Park
We do not give grants for the promotion of religion, so it may surprise people that we have made several awards to this faith based project; the latest in December 2014 for £124,250 over three years. However, although faith is a central motivation of the people who run Faith in Queen’s Park, the project doesn’t promote religion but works with people of all faiths and none to build a stronger community. We have invested in the project as an example of best practice in community cohesion.
The project was set up by a former Vicar at All Saints Parish Curch, Queen’s Park , Rev Jay McLeod. Its staff and volunteer management committee come from a range of religious backgrounds including Muslim, Christian & Sikh and the ethnic mix reflects the diversity that has always been a feature of the Queen’s Park area.
They run a number of core projects for young people and disadvantaged adults involving on average 260 people and sixty hours given by volunteers per week. Their activities focus on sport, music and heritage, such as Fusion youth singing, singing groups for Muslim women and children and Muslim men, youth cricket and basket ball.
Our Trustees have been particularly impressed by Faith in Queen’s Park’s willingness to look outside their local area to find project partners to collaborate with, building links across the generations, wards and cultures. They have a longstanding musical collaboration with local groups supporting people with alzheimers and dementia, whose members have collaborated with the children of Fusion youth singing on a number of ambitious musical productions including an opera. Women and Children from Faith in Queen’s Park also took part in a ground breaking project with women and children held in Yarlswood Immigration and Removal Centre. The project was led by Music in Detention (also funded by us), with the Queen’s Park women taking part in a moving end of project concert with their counterparts at the Removal Centre.