Some years ago I read an unforgettable account of one of the most severe child abuse cases in California in the 1970’s. It is the story of boy who was beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played tortuous, unpredictable games. You may be thinking ‘what’s that got to do with the Brierley Hill Project’? This week has proven that the answer is a whole lot. Some people endure the most unspeakable things that we get to hear about when they are adults, thankfully, only on rare occasions and strangely …like buses these cases sometimes appear together.
We all deserve a safe home, family, friends….people to support us, to cheer us up when we are down, to cheer us on when we are flagging. Some people we come into contact with have no one. Nobody at all.
In January we had 343 visits, 19 one to one sessions giving specific help and support in the drop-in, 11 befriending and mentoring sessions outside of our drop-in times. Welfare Rights had 10 appointments dealing with benefits issues and we gave out 77 food parcels.
On the youth side we engaged with 65 young people and had 2 youth mentoring sessions.
We are not just about the numbers although they are indicative of the need we try to meet. The numbers don’t tell you much about the complexity and nature of some of the issues that present themselves but whatever it is we do our very best to treat everyone with kindness and respect.
It is our great privilege to be there for people with no one else to speak of and where we don’t offer the best help for someone in need we can signpost and walk with them through the process.
Thanks to the volunteers who help us week in and week out. It wouldn’t be possible without you.