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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town

Manners, who teaches them?

Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world. Nelson Mandela

Manners, who has them, who teaches them?  Parents, teachers, friends - do we presume that all play their part in making sure good manners are shared and passed on?  It doesn’t take too long before it becomes obvious that not everyone has either been taught, or is able/willing to teach manners to other generations – having just visited a popular eating place in Ipswich we know this for a fact!  If something like manners isn’t taught, then what else is failing to be passed on?  Each generation has so much to share with those around them, if only they would find their voice. 

Just how good are we though at sharing the things we have learnt through the years?  We spend a lifetime learning (and forgetting) so much, who nowadays could work an old ‘adding up’ machine, or an old shop till?  Could everyone be able to work out how much change to return to the customer, without the till telling them the answer?

This is one reason why here at hope trust we are launching our new cookery classes, we want to help people who don’t know how to cook to learn, to have a choice between ready meals and home cooked ones, if only for a day!  Utilising our recently refurbished kitchen we are going to help people learn, or expand, their knowledge of cooking basic meals; once prepared the cook will then invite up to 3 friends to join them to share in their culinary creation!  If you would like to find out more, please give us a call.

We are also planning, during the summer, to offer people a chance to come together during a weekend and enjoy time with others whilst indulging in sandwiches and cakes. The first of these will be Sunday May 17th between 3pm and 5pm and we will host this at Maidstone Hall.  As a charity dedicated to the relief of loneliness we know that, for some, the weekend can be the hardest time as it can appear everyone else has got family and friends to socialise with.  Give us a call in you would like to find out more.

is more rewarding to watch money change the world

It is more rewarding to watch money change the world than to watch it accumulate – Gloria Steinem

Funny thing money, the news is full of stories of footballers who could earn £500,000 a week but, next time you are on your laptop, type in micro lending charities and you will find information on

organisations which help sub African female entrepreneurs.  These charities lend small amounts of money and provide ongoing training, which enables the ladies to turn their hand to making enough money to support their family.  You can read about a woman who keep bees and sell the honey or another woman who runs a tailoring business – each loan helps these women provide their children with an education, as well as food to eat and clothes to wear.  Nothing wrong in earning half a million a week, but using money to transform people’s lives is even better, isn’t it?

The lyric of the song ‘money makes the world go around’ is often true, but you can choose what aspect of the world your money turns.  Helping people move out of poverty is amazing, but money can also support a local charity, buy equipment for a hospital, provide clean water for a village, support an organisation as it, in turn, supports those who are less able to help themselves.

Like all charities, hope trust requires the support of its volunteers to make each event, each community opportunity, work.  It also needs the support of its regular donors, each one who pledges to donate a specific sum on a regular basis.  One donor loves the idea that her monthly gift provides, amongst other things, the refreshments at our regular monthly film event - as a popcorn lover herself, she loves others having a chance to enjoy what she enjoys!

So, how are you doing at using your money to change the world, one person at a time?

What's for tea Mum?

What’s for tea Mum?

A familiar refrain heard in homes across the town and normally the answer wouldn’t be too hard, until you reach the season of Lent, that is.  At this time of Lent our daughter has chosen to give up bread, cheese and cider, so no pizza and garlic bread for her, or us!  This practice was introduced to her some years ago and is one that she enthusiastically embraces each year, challenging herself to do without staple items as a form of self discipline as well as reflection.  Your

experience may be like hers, either do without something you really enjoy to prove to yourself that you can, or kick start a change in your habits.  Others take the time to reflect on deeper issues than what to have for lunch/tea!  Starting on Ash Wednesday, lasting for 40 days (which doesn’t include Sundays) many people use this time of year to reflect on Jesus Christ, his life, death and resurrection. 

It’s good to spend time reflecting; taking time out to think through what is going on in life and to decide if we want it to stay like this, or not, seems like a great idea.  Question is, is it one we practice?  If we do, how often do we do it?  Certainly every Christmas/New Year we look back on the year just about to come to a close and chat through the good, the bad and the indifferent and decide how we want to approach the year to come. It would be helpful though to reflect more than once a year!

We mention this because hope trust seeks to help people who, having reflected, want to make changes, want to do or try new things.  That’s why, in April, we will help someone learn to cook their first ever Cottage Pie; once cooked, it will be served to the 3 guests invited to enjoy it with her