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Cost of Living Crisis - Stories of Hope from the Frontline

Matt Holderness Portrait Matt Holderness
4 min

Helping those most in need

Stewardship’s response to the cost of living crisis launched in autumn 2022. Our goal was to support churches and charities serving on the frontline by setting up a Cost of Living Rapid Response that included partnering with Good Faith Foundation’s Warm Welcome initiative and creating the Stewardship Cost of Living Response Fund

Thanks to our generous community of givers we were able to raise almost £200k in the first few weeks. These funds are now being distributed to our partners who are working tirelessly to support those in need.

Sharing the hope of Jesus during the cost of living crisis

We were able to issue nearly £50k in the first wave of grants last month from the Stewardship Cost of Living Response Fund. 

Edge Ministries used their grant to run a free Santa's Grotto that welcomed over 280 people, providing free gifts for every child. As well as sharing the Good News about Jesus there were also free hot dogs and mince pies for everyone. As the month of January progresses the team are planning to use the fund to provide families with much needed support with their food and fuel bills, while continuing to run their community café.

edge ministries

Life Church in Bradford serves a diverse community in need. They noticed that many families were struggling to afford both food and heating.  

The church received funding to help over 100 families with food and fuel. They also distributed over 4,000 toys to children in need through their local networks, ensuring that children who may have received nothing would have something to celebrate on Christmas Day.

life church

Rob Hutcheson of Life Church commented: ‘All of what we were able to do this year was only made possible through us working in collaboration with Stewardship and others; it’s incredible what can be achieved when we work together.’ 

church call out

Offering a warm welcome to all

In addition to the Cost of Living Response Fund, we’ve also partnered with a coalition of charities who have registered as Warm Welcome spaces. These spaces serve as hubs for food, friendship and warmth for people in their local communities. 

The Warm Welcome space at Kings Church Halifax was established as a local response to the cost of living crisis. The building, which has kitchen and café facilities, is open every day of the week and the heating is always on. The space is accessible to anyone in need of free warmth and social interaction. 

The grant they have received is helping the church be more creative and forge new partnerships locally. Family activities are being crafted as well as new initiatives to bring in single parents. Furthermore, they’re hoping to use the funding to expand their base of beneficiaries. For example, the building serves Ukrainian refugees who attend on Tuesdays for English lessons. 

church halifax

Temple Street Methodist Church used their grant to deliver a weekly community meal on Tuesdays with board game activities in response to popular demand. They've noticed that interactive games help people, who otherwise struggle with loneliness and isolation, to socialise and connect. The Warm Welcome initiative has also supported 19 Salvation Army-affiliated churches set up and run lounge spaces providing their communities with free drinks and food. 

church call out

How you can get involved

We are acutely aware that people will need cost-of-living help for the foreseeable future and preparations are underway to release the next round of grants. As one direct recipient recently commented, “The impact of the gifts we received was huge; we can’t afford to put meals on the table. It arrived just when our need was at its most.”’ 

You can find out more about our response to the cost of living crisis by visiting our Rapid Response page where you can: 

  • Support Warm Welcome, our partnership with a coalition of charities who’ve registered as a Warm Welcome space to open their doors to those struggling to heat their homes. 
  • Support the Stewardship Cost of Living Response Fund. We’ll move your support to where the need is greatest; safely, securely and quickly. It is a collective pot allowing us to join forces and give what we can to help those most in need.
  • Support our charity partners. You can choose to donate to a range of Stewardship-registered charities seeking to respond directly to the crisis.

Stay in touch

Over the coming weeks, we’ll be bringing you further impact stories on the vital work that our partners are doing. You can also stay informed by following us on social media or sign up to Generous, our generosity newsletter, to receive all the latest updates. 

Generous Newsletter

Monthly emails for supporters. Inspiration, practical tools and guidance to support the causes you love in more meaningful ways. 

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Written by

Matt Holderness

Matt joined Stewardship in 2022 with over twenty years of marketing experience from roles at Kendal College and Capernwray Bible School. He has degrees in Business and Marketing, Theology, Management and most recently a Masters in Hermeneutics. 

Through raising awareness of Stewardship’s services, Matt helps people explore the impact their generosity can have on the church and Christian charities. He’s passionate about supporting Evangelism and Bible causes, and has a particular interest in charities that are helping people in Poverty and Debt in the UK.