Picture Supplied. (C) Christian Aid

Press release issued by Christian Aid (NE), Monday 29th January 2018. 

The Rt Revd Paul Butler, Bishop of Durham has welcomed a new global justice scheme launched this January by Christian Aid in partnership with the Church of England which aims to empower a new generation of children to speak out against poverty and injustice.

The scheme, Global Neighbours, is designed to support primary schools’ work with pupils on global citizenship and aims to develop their understanding of global poverty and justice, the Christian call to tackle injustice and their own ability to bring about change as confident agents of change.

Schools are now being encouraged to register for the scheme and take advantage of the free resources on the Global Neighbours webpage with ideas on how to incorporate global justice learning into the curriculum, worship and school life throughout the school year.

Accreditation will come at three levels – bronze, silver and gold – which will be verified by the Church of England Education Office which will look for evidence across the five areas of learning, spirituality and worship, pupil participation, community engagement and school leadership.

Bishop Paul said: “It is always exciting to work in partnership with Christian Aid. This particular opportunity enables us to work together to deliver an education that is deeply Christian and serving the common good.

“Children are very often strongly attuned to deeply troubling issues in the world today. By using Christian Aid’s extensive experience of tackling poverty and the systems that cause it, Global Neighbours will help children not only recognise injustice but also understand the Christian mandate to act on it.

“My hope, and that of the Church of England’s Education Office, is that Global Neighbours will help pupils be confident change agents. It will provide them with great opportunities to make a difference through transforming lives and communities. 

“It is wonderful to see how schools have already responded in the pilot phase. It has helped nurture pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

“I am encouraging parishes to work with their local schools to help make the most of the opportunities Global Neighbours brings. Through this cooperation, we can help build a new generation of well informed, capable and courageous advocates tackling some of the significant challenges our world faces.”

Christian Aid Regional Coordinator Emma Peak, said: “We are delighted to have the support of Bishop Paul and look forward to working alongside parishes and schools. Many schools are already engaging with issues of injustice and poverty and our vision is that this scheme will affirm and recognise what they currently do and provide impetus to take that engagement to a new level.

“We are now actively recruiting volunteer Christian Aid teachers to help staff deliver the scheme and would love to hear from anyone with experience of working in education who has a passion for communicating issues and helping pupils find their voice.”

Any primary school can now register for the scheme without any cost or obligation and download the free handbook from the Christian Aid website. Anyone interested in finding out more about the volunteer Christian Aid Teacher role can visit www.christianaid.org.uk/volunteering/become-christian-aid-teacher or contact the North East office on 0191 228 0115, or email newcastle@christian-aid.org.