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Centre Profile

Haverhill Schools Initiative

What’s the most exciting thing about your work in schools right now?

I never imagined when we started our first Rock Solid group we would now have 6 Rock Solid groups within our Middle Schools, so weekly we reach many students. It’s been a great encouragement as the schools are very open as well as students. It has allowed us to build on the lessons and assemblies and start to build relationships with these young people.

It’s been really exciting but we know this will come to an end this school year as our school structure changes and we lose all our middle schools. We hope because of the relationships we have built through RS our work will change shape but new challenges and openings will allow those relationships to continue as we share our faith with them.

What lessons have you learnt?

Communication and relationship is crucial. Building up positive relationships with staff opens up more opportunities. The staff are as much of the part of our work; we need to show them the gospel too.

The other key thing is to be real, young people spot if you are trying to be anything else. The more honest you are with them the more willing they are to let down their barriers and be honest with you.

One of the challenges in schools work is the balance between the educator in the classroom and the fun relational side in a club, it’s a balance which once found creates great relationships in both settings, one which staff will notice!

What’s in the pipe line?

Having done the large majority of our work in the middle schools, this will all come to an end this summer as our middle schools close down. We are now building relationships with the secondary schools and hoping now is the time for them to be open to us as we seek to start a new group ‘Life Space’, exploring faith and life in a cafe style school group.

At the moment the future is unclear, our greatest fear, challenge and excitement. We now get to explore new routes and seek new ways to reach the young people in our town.

For more information on the work of Haverhill, get in touch with Beckie by email on haverhillschoolsinitiative@googlemail.com.

Contact Details: Beckie Pickering: haverhillschoolsinitiative@googlemail.com