Tuesday 13th December (Catch Up)

"So you're back," you say. "What happened?"
A lot. Anne writes: "I was in the middle of writing September's post when I was called to provide emergency care for my brother in the States. I returned when he was allowed to drive again but soon after I got home he took ill again and much to our shock passed away." As our main communications person Anne's absence for several weeks left a big gap. However she had already completed her main remit: to raise enough money so all the ground floor alterations could take place - an incredible success story - so the trustees had already confirmed her contract was to end when she had to disappear to the States. So we'll be saying farewell at our Christmas meal next week and she'll leave to begin a new chapter. We'll all miss her at the Centre and wish her well for the future. Here is her final blog:

Art therapy in full swing
October was Wellbeing month  - designed to highlight all the things you can do to keep yourself well both emotionally and physically. At the Atholl Centre our focus was very much on making friends and trying out new activities as social isolation is a big problem here, both for the elderly and for those with mental health problems, so we collaborated with Highland Perthshire's Care Co-operative, Perth & Kinross Council's social prescriber, Plus Perth (the mental health charity who have been using our garden to grow veg this year) and the WA soup lunch to put on a taster event at the Centre on the first Friday of October.  As well as lunch we had massage, art therapy, creative writing, garden crafts, a  Care Co-op stall, a listening post and  a community activities display.
All set to make seed bombs in the garden
Although the lunch was well attended as usual, visitors were a bit more shy about visiting our taster events. Here is what one older lady wrote on the theme of being alive: "Nature helps me feel alive. There is not enough love.  I find it difficult to get motivated. I never used to have any bother, just since I became ill." Others talked about the importance of love too and creativity, and those brave enough to try something new said the things they tried did help. We hope the Centre's new  inclusive facilities will enable more people to try new things, break out from loneliness, find a loving community and unleash their spirit and their creativity - find fullness of life.

Anne manned an Atholl Centre stall at the Wellbeing launch event in Perth too - both to promote our new conference room and to advertise our accessible residential facilities for group holidays & conferences and for personal & family short breaks. It was a great opportunity to talk to other caring charities & organisations and quite a few  new people showed interest in what we have to offer. A new group who have had their first meeting here as a result of Wellbeing outreach is called Care after Cancer.

Enchanted Forest
October is Enchanted Forest month - Pitlochry's Son et Lumiere event, which has become internationally renown and this year had over 70,000 visitors, with tickets sold out early in the month. So most of our month was hugely busy with B&B. However we still had 3 weekend conferences (2 churches and a U3A from Edinburgh) and the annual Pitlochry 3 week craft fair, which had to be held in our upstairs conference room due to the build. Craft fair enthusiast Dee held court with a sample stall in the foyer to direct people up to the main display and make sure no-one got lost. So just as well Damian, Kasia & Anya were here to help out. They left with our  grateful thanks at the end of the month. Iain thoroughly enjoyed meeting so many of you at the Baptist Assembly at the end of  October where he had a stall to help him share our news.

Dima hard at work
In November Dima (short for Dimitri) arrived from Belarus. Another Stand International intern, he'll be with us till the Spring. He's very chatty and loves to keep busy. He's already joined in with football at the Leisure centre, Men's Curry Night with the church and helped out at the theatre in his spare time. This late in the year it was great to have 4 residential groups: Wholeness Through Christ Retreat, Baptist Union Next Stage Ministry, Friends International students and Chinese Christian Fellowship (Edinburgh). The last 2 were self-catering, giving our staff the welcome relief of weekends off. We  had a couple of day conferences too (Spina Bifida Scotland and Scottish Churches network) and are grateful to the church for letting us use the sanctuary when it's been too messy or noisy to use our own rooms.

WA soup lunch is meeting right up till Christmas but has had to have a few of their lunches in the church over the last few weeks as the build began work on the dining room. Other community groups have already stopped for the holidays. We received a lovely card and chocolates from the Autism support group. "Thank you for being so lovely & helpful." they said. Pacer (mental health craft group) said a sad goodbye as they have been offered  a free NHS room for their meetings. We'll miss you and your creativity!  Destiny (Plus Pitlochry) have started tidying up the veg plot for the winter with plans for fresh outreach to therapeutic gardeners in the New Year. Art class met today in the newly floored dining room even though the painter & AV people were working away in the other side of the room!

 Our Blysthwood shoebox Chrsitmas tree
We took part in the Pitlochry Christmas tree festival with a Blysthwood shoebox tree rhis year as we are a collecting point here, and last week Iain went to school to officially receive on behalf of the Trussel Trust and our foodbank  food donations the kids had collected (Well done guys!) together with a cheque from the TSB. This month we had one day conference - John Muir Trust - and the Scottish  Junior Orienteering Squad came for a self catering weekend, finding their way through the Black Spout Woods as part of their trail on Saturday.

The build is reaching its conclusion slowly but surely. The new conference room will be finished by Christmas๐Ÿ˜Š - the AV has just been fitted, the partition is due to arrive on Monday and the carpet will go down next week. Work will begin on giving the corridor & foyer a face-lift next week too. The outside  work however will not be finished until after the New Year,

A big thank you to everyone who has put so much work in to getting this finished and to our funders who made it all possible  - from drawing up the plans, tendering & getting permissions through to the build itself:
Installing the new AV

LEADER Scottish & European Funding, the Community Innovation Fund, the Goodnews Scotland Health Trust, the Northwood Charitable Trust, the Gannochy Trust, the Rank Foundation, Santander, the Robert Barr Trust, The Tay Charitable Trust, the Garfield Weston Foundation, Kola's Trust, the Jimmy Cairncross Trust, the Thomson Trust, the Fargher Noble Trust, the Tillyloss Trust, the Alexander Moncur Trust, Miss ME Swinton Paterson's Charitable Trust, the James T. Howatt Trust, the Enchanted Forest Community Fund, the Burrows Charitable Trust and of course all our supporters - individuals, churches and community groups - who have donated to our building fund over the past couple of years and  during our crowdfunding campaign last year.

Above all we praise God. What a wonderful provider we have! May He empower us to serve others and change lives for the better well into the future.

Here's a video to wish you all a wonderful Christmas. God bless & keep you now and in the New Year.

Iain, Anne, Wilma & Chris






 Thursday 13th October (September blog)

Life is full of ups & downs & the Atholl Centre is no exception. 
The bad news:The new conference room is running well behind schedule. 
The good news: The roof problem has at last been sorted out and the section of the roof which was giving us problems has now been completely replaced.

Half of the old dining room roof is replaced

The new roof lights finally go in
The Bad news: This unexpected eventuality has cost us over £10,000, so we have had to cut back on updating all the electricals in the foyer and corridor. So - no new lighting, no new power points in those areas, meaning the approach to the new room won't be as bright and well presented as we'd planned.
The Good news: The conference room will still be amazing with lots of natural light, well insulated for both sound and heat, with the loop and built in AV (including bluetooth technology) as planned. Choosing the carpet now. The dining room floor will also be updated as planned with new lighting and a new wooden floor. There will be a smooth & level transition when the soundproof partition is open allowing the 2 rooms to be used as one when greater space is required. So that part is all good.

We're currently fundraising for new curtains and chairs. This is primarily because the old conference room will not be transformed into 3 bedrooms in the immediate future, so that furniture will still be needed there. We are taking a break from big transformations for the moment, now we have achieved everything we had aimed for on our ground floor, and are going to be concentrating on consolidation now i.e. focusing on doing what we do best - serving you and encouraging even more of you to use our new & improved facilities.
However there is the small matter of the roof... Iain will be at the Assembly at the end of this month with all the details.

 In September we had a mixture of familiar faces and new groups coming to stay.
Pony therapy
The highlight of the ME group's stay must have been the pony therapy as local riding display group Riders of the Storm brought in Dainty the Shetland pony to say hello. Art therapy and physiotherapy (massage) was also part of the  week's programme. How could we help your group to enhance their stay?  Ruchill Church & Going Solo also brought well kennt faces. New this month was a visit from the Aboyne disability centre and the month ended on a high as Stand International brought a sizeable group of disabled young people from Eastern Europe for 10 days with wheelchairs whizzing up & down the corridor & lots of fun & excitement. As they are a self catering group  Atholl Centre staff made the most of the opportunity to take a well earned break after their busy summer.

The weather has been glorious and we  are enjoying a beautiful autumn with gorgeous colours. The month began with fantastic weather for Pitlochry Highland games. Great to see the bands parading through the streets.

Our last volunteer of the Polish trio, Paul (Pawel), left before Stand International arrived, but Hannah
...and it's goodbye to Paul
(interning  here through Stand Int.) was pleased to see all her friends again. Paul hopes to go on to Mexico next, but only a couple of weeks after he left his little sister Kasia  arrived,
keeping it in the family. Damian came back with big smiles & hugs - it was so lovely to see him -  with new girl Anya, also from Poland, to help us out in October. So we praise God for sending help at the right time keeping us going strong over the busy summer & autumn.



                                               5th Sept (August Blog)     
What a difference a month makes!  The extension is up and the roof covering is due to go on. We’re still on track to get it finished in October, with the aim of having the dining room re-floored and up to size again by the end of September.

The new extension takes shape
As a continuation of our July thrift shop volunteer Daisy managed to sell a few items on ebay and raised over £300 last month. We're very grateful to have also had donations through both Stewardshsip  and MYDonate (which is the on-line donations platform we use on our website. We're linked with Easyfundraising too.) We were also awarded some more grant funding to help with the conference room. Just as well as there are always unexpected surprises – which usually cost money – this time the old roof has given us some problems. We need to install more skylights in the old roof to give enough natural light as that area is now enclosed, but it turns out the old roof was not designed to have new holes cut in it, so that will be expensive to resolve. So do keep on praying & giving. It’s not over till the fat lady sings. 

Daisy at Soldiers of Killiekrankie - they had a dressing up tent!
Ani & Sally dress up too

We loved having Ani & Sally with us in August and were sad to see them go so soon. They gave us a lovely friendship bowl in memory of their stay with us. A couple of weeks later Kasanya came just for a week followed by Hannah, both from Belarus and Hannah's settling in just fine. She's off to Glasgow today to do some training with Stand International & will be back afterwards. We were also sad to say goodbye to Erik & Damian who left at the weekend to return to university in Poland. They both worked so hard & have been a great help over the summer. Damian hopes to come back again next year though, so we're looking forward to that. Paul is still with us for a little longer. It’s been brilliant having our own little international community over the summer and we’re so pleased the sun has started to shine again for them. They were beginning to believe it rained all the time in Scotland
Ani (right) & Sally (left) say goodbye giving us a friendship bowl
Erik (right) & Damian(left) say goodbye too giving us a new mascot Martha the hedgehog
August has seen a lot of B&B including many international guests & the flat has been well used too. We continue to see quite a few vulnerable people using us for personal holidays, so please pray as we take the opportunity to listen, offer support and witness to God’s love. September will be mainly groups - we have the annual holiday for people with  ME with us just now and then a disabled group from Aboyne, Ruchill church, Going Solo and Stand International (disabled folk from Eastern Europe), so please pray for each group. October sees a return to B&B with a great opportunity to reach many new people as they come for the Enchanted Forest.
                                      The ME group helped us make this video last year

Our community garden is blooming thanks to Destiny Plus, one of our mental health groups. We won a next stage certificate from It’s Your Neighbourhood - a tribute to the progress we have made over this last year - and David put together our new picnic table set which makes the garden even more user friendly. We're trying to get more people using the garden as well as hoping to create the sensory area when the building work is finished, so if you're interested we'd love to hear from you. 
David makes up our new picnic table & chairs set
October is Wellbeing month designed to highlight all the things in the community people can get involved in to make new friends & keep healthy. We’re planning 2 events at the Atholl Centre on the 7th & 28th October from 11-3, so do pray as we organise these that they will be a great success in bringing people together and inspiring people to get more involved in their local community. Many of our community groups take a break over the summer and they are gradually beginning to start up again. It was Pacer's first day back today and we've just learnt we're getting a drop in literacy and IT through the council starting in October. We're working on more provision for foreign workers in Pitlochry at the moment, so please pray as we put in  funding applications  and talk to potential providers. We've also now met Perth & Kinross's social prescriber. Lots of ideas. Lots of possibilities. Please pray for wisdom as we find out what part we should play in developments in this area of our community.
  Tues  26th July 2016 (June & July blog)
The new conference room.
 Foundations in.  Walls going up

"When God calls you to be involved in something exciting that you really care about, you don't have to be pushed - the vision pulls you."  


We’re really excited that work on the new conference room started in mid-June. The foundations have now been laid and the walls are going up. Exciting! Thank you so much to everyone who has prayed & donated over the past months (and years) to make this happen. Your faithful support is amazing. God has also blessed us with grants great & small from a number of Trusts as well as Scottish and European government funding (LEADER), a loan from the Baptist Building Fund to help with cash flow and a bequest which made the timing of this build come together.If it were not for this bequest we would not have made the deadlines for securing match funding and would have lost a good deal of the money we had been promised! We continue to fundraise to cover unexpected expenses, so don't stop yet - we already had to have BT in to move a telephone pole- and our Thrift shop last week raised over £800. So a big thank you to everyone who donated and helped out.
Our Polish volunteers: Paul, Erik & Damien

Ani & Sally from Georgia
2 Polish lads, Erik and Paul came to  volunteer with us in June and have been a big help with painting & decorating.The TV room has had a makeover! Damian also from Poland joined them in July and a couple of weeks later Ani and Sally came from Georgia through our contact with the Christian charity for the disabled Stand International. Celia our French intern has now returned home. She really enjoyed her time here and she & the boys were a big help preparing for the wedding.
Tea & scones to say goodbye to Celia
What wedding? I hear you say. Iain & Anne's son Callum married Daisy (ๆž—่Š) in PItlochry Baptist church on the 2nd of July  and they used the Atholl Centre as their wedding venue. The bedrooms were filled with family guests (including Daisy's parents who came all the way from China), the foyer took on a Chinese theme, and the dining room was transformed (with the help of Make I Do and lovely friends) into a sparkling wonderland. Nel did a wonderful job with the catering and local band Ballinceol made the ceilidh go with a swing. Iain & Anne took 2 weeks off to get everything ready & clear up afterwards!
Callum & Daisy chat at their wedding meal

Having fun at the ceilidh

But that was just one weekend ! In June we had 3 church groups: YF, family & OAPs plus B&B for the Rob Roy way Fundraising Challenge weekend and as well as doing B&B, July has been a MECOPP month (Minority & Ethnic Carers) with Gypsy travellers and 2 groups of UK based Chinese as our guests, but the first group after the wedding was Persona counselling course  who had a graduation ceremony at the end of their week. 

The first Mental Health Training Day for Scottish Christian Centres took place in July too. Iain's brainchild, it was led by Kathleen Shearer who runs 1 of our 3 mental health support groups and was attended by 12 delegates from Christian outdoor & conference centres across Scotland. What did they think? "A most informative & interesting morning" Emily, Ardgour   "Most useful &  a good reminder of  the basic principles of caring for people with complex & varied issues." Andrew, Abernethy. Now to plan next year's!


Jenny from Destiny shows off her produce

Another of our mental health groups:PLUS Pitlochry (now renamed Destiny) has transformed our growing area. What a harvest this year! And they gave us a brilliant write up in their last newsletter. It's Your Neighbourhood (from Beautiful Scotland) came to judge our garden, so our brilliant volunteers came to the rescue again with a quick paint job for the raised beds and a busy weeding party to help Alastair our gardener make everything look spick & span. Thanks to Andrew Walker from Arran Baptist we now have some tree slices for the kids to sit on or use as stepping stones or as their fancy leads them. So the garden's looking great - in spite of all the construction work - and we're now making concrete plans for the development of the sensory garden once the outside work for the build is complete. In fact we hope to do a bag pack at the co-op to make sure we have enough for that project so keep an eye out on facebook for the dates.
Children's play area

Painting the raised beds. Look how they've grown












                                                Mon 30th May 2016
Life at the coal face
What an amazing month of sunshine we've had. Such a lovely change after snow in April! Suddenly nature has come to life and Pitlochry is looking gorgeous.
bluebells in May

Our first guests of the month were the See Hear Deaf Conference. It was a very special event as they were celebrating 43 years of meeting here at the Atholl Centre - one of our first ever groups! They reminisced about how the Centre had looked when they first came (and how some of them had looked as young people), the way Watson & Kathleen Moyes had first welcomed and encouraged them, and all the changes which had taken place since. They saw the first development of the Centre and were there before the main block was built and now they are seeing the new developments. This year was a turning point. The current leaders are retiring and as everyone is getting older they felt the present incarnation of See Hear had to come to an end. There were sad farewells at the door & promises to visit just for an ordinary holiday. Moves are afoot to see about another deaf holiday or conference in the future with the hope of attracting a new generation. 
                                       Outgoing & past leaders cut the anniversary cake
We had perfect weather for this year's Etape Caledonis Cycle Challenge. 5,000 cyclists  riding through 81 miles of stunning Highland Perthshire scenery and bringing their friends & families to cheer them on. The town was hotching! As usual the start & finish was right outside and the Atholl Centre was at the heart of the event hosting the HQ, the motorcycle marshals looking after safety on the road and the massage team helping out with those tight muscles both before & after the race. Event commentary took place in the carpark and the church joined in by handing out free tea &
cake to competitors & their families at the church gate.
 raising money for cancer care
  church folk welcome the cyclists
coming up to the finish line
Scottish Kids with Heart Disorders also had a sunny weekend. The Centre was full with 50 guests: 25 adults and 25 children (7 of whom stayed in their caravan at Faskally ). The kids enjoyed our new play area and the new tipi was set up as a wee den in the dining room for them.  They said, "We had great fun, great company and great weather. We managed to cycle, swim and put, along with a visit to the new park and the caravan. The children even had fun making arts and crafts and playing games while the adults chatted and played some games upstairs.Thank you to all who came and made the weekend relaxing, joyful and special for all who attended." They gave us a lovely thankyou card saying how great the food was and how they had had brilliant time in Pitlochry yet again.
                                     SACHAD families pose for a photo at the new park
                                                Playing games in the dining room

Lodging house mission for the homeless thoroughly enjoyed their respite week and then it was an Autism support group from Edinburgh here for  the first time on the following weekend. We've also had a few B&B and self-catering apartment guests including folks walking the Rob Roy Way, so it's been a busy month.

We're glad to say Celia, our French intern arrived safely & is settling in to the Centre well, She says Hi. Please make her welcome when you see her.

Breaking new ground
We had our first conference room site meeting this month. It's so exciting - it's really happening! We took the opportunity at the Retired Baptist Minister's away day to capture a historic moment as Watson Moyes, founder of the Atholl Centre, Alan Berry, Chairman of the Trustees and Iain Walker (Director) poured over the plans. So we're aiming for work starting on Mon 13th June (please pray for no more delays - one of our funders is having IT problems and we can't start without them). We're trying to keep disruption to a minimum, so we're happy to say the dining room will still be in use for most of the build,
                                       Watson, Alan & Iain - from the past to the future

The garden is growing. As well as getting a tipi for the children's play area we are please to say that PLUS Pitlochry (People Like US mental health support) have started planting up our raised beds and will be meeting at the Centre twice a week to chat & to garden. Anne attended an It's your Neighbourhood event in Stirling to talk about our garden as part of training new assessors. They loved our video & wish us well for our hopes for growth. It was good to hear about other gardening projects too. She also went to see a project called Happy n Healthy in Rutherglen through our local Social Enterprise Network - it's so good to hear other people's experiences and to learn from them.
I'll leave you with our garden video from last year. Enjoy.




                                                     Tues 26th April 2016

April's Thrift shop
A big thank you to everyone who helped out at our 2 weeks of Thrift Shop – first week for the Atholl Centre conference room appeal which made £800 & 2nd for the refugees (Red Cross & MSF) which made £600. The leftover goods went direct to the local Red Cross shop at the end which will surely raise the refugee total substantially as the room was choc-a-bloc with goods. It is brilliant to have so much support from our local church & community both in donating goods to sell and manning the thrift shop.

Garden toys in the play area
The children’s area of the community garden is now open for use. The sand pit is up and garden toys are in the toy store. This area is particularly suitable for younger children and we hope to see it well used by kids from church & Centre alike, but it’s snowing again! We have a group called Plus Perth (therapeutic gardening for mental health) interested in helping us develop our garden and getting more volunteers involved, so we're looking forward to seeing the garden filled with busy people.

The new sandpit

Red cord card in our disabled loos
This month has been busy with conferences and breaks covering all our bases, starting with a ladies conference, then UFM missionary society, East Kilbride Girls brigade, Persona Counselling here now and finally the Deaf Christian Fellowship to come next week. I’m sure the Deaf Fellowship will be impressed with our new deaf alarms. As well as being linked in to our fire system these flashing & vibrating alarms can also be used as alarm clocks.  We’re also pleased to have received a bunch of review cards and red cord cards from Euan’s Guide, a guide to accessible venues set up in 2014 by inspired individual Euan Macdonald from Edinburgh who was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease in 2013. His disabled access review website & smartphone app is really successful & giving people with disabilities the confidence to move beyond their comfort zone and visit new places.
The new deaf alarms


Nel laden with groceries
Over 90 people attended the UFM weekend conference. All the meetings were here, our accommodation was full and others stayed at local B&Bs or just came for the day. So it was a busy but happy time & had a great buzz. We've needed to replace the vinyl in 3 of our new en-suites already as there have been issues with the quality & then a leak was found when the vinyl was taken up, so it was a huge rush to get it all finished before the Girls Brigade arrived. They wrote "All the girls and leaders of the 7th East Kilbride Girls' Brigade wish to say a big thank you to Iain and his staff for another fab weekend. They looked after us well and the food was great too." It’s great to have Nel our cook back with us after a spell down south & she’s come back with lots of new cooking inspiration too. Sunday saw an amazing new veggie option with lentils, peanuts & coriander which smelled delicious.

David K. our electrical volunteer has been working hard to improve the coverage of our wifi, so trust it to be when the counselling course need internet connection that we were still having problems.Praise God Angela & Richard fixed it yesterday afternoon. Just in time. Thanks guys:)

The food bank continues to be needed too. WA soup lunch has its last meeting at the end of April and then on the first Friday of May there will be a taster session for local ready meals for the elderly. If you’re local feel free come along and try them out.

Leaving the best till last, we have really good news. We’ve just heard we now have enough funding to go ahead with the extension to the dining room to make the new accessible conference room with AV & deaf loop on our ground floor. We have still to set a date for work to begin, but hope it will be no later than June. Thank you for all your prayers. God is good. Now you can pray for the architect’s team and builders as they plan for the start of work.



 May is set to be another busy month. Celia from France will be arriving in mid May for a 6 week internship. Please say hello & make her feel welcome. As well as praying for God’s blessing on our community groups and those who visit us for rest & training, please pray for strength for staff over a very busy period, especially with the build coming up.  


31/03/16
Happy Easter!
Hope you had a great Easter weekend. On Easter day we celebrate that Jesus overcame death - the final frontier - so Easter is a celebration of new life.and new hope. Pitlochry churches celebrated Good Friday with an early morning meditation walk carrying a cross round the town and Easter day with a joint garden communion as well as Easter services in each church. 
Do you like our Easter garden?
Just like the Alps, Above Loch Erichty
There were lots of Easter egg hunts for locals and visitors alike and local restaurants were crammed with family get togethers and hotels & B&B with visitors. We had a few ourselves. However the school Easter holidays are still to come & just about to begin. The good news is the Atholl Centre is open for B&B for the first 2 weeks of April so we can share our amazing scenery and green space with you. Did you know that scientists now recognise there are tangible health benefits from experiencing nature? Here are some pics taken on a lovely walk last week on a beautiful blue sky day not far away at Loch Erichty. Why not book now & enjoy a breath of fresh air at the Atholl Centre.
A beautiful view of the loch
10th anniversary cake
We've been making plans to make the most of the  Atholl Centre community garden too. Anne went to a Trellis conference (starring Jim McCall of the Beechgrove garden) who encourage & support therapeutic gardening. She picked up quite a few contacts & ideas to make sure our garden is used to give our local community hope & delight. A mental health charity called PLUS Perth has shown an interest in helping us take things forward.

Jim McCall plants a tree to celebrate Trellis' 10th anniversary
We've had a few groups to stay this month too. Prestonpans & Lesmahagow Youth Groups both had a fantastic time self-catering and enjoying the great outdoors. A group of elderly Chinese carers came from Edinburgh for a mid week holiday too. Their trips included a Highland Safari and a visit to Blair Castle. They were so happy to be here and touched to be greeted in their own language (We learned  a few words in China at our son's wedding). Baptist minister's wives have just arrived, so it's all go. Just in time to join in with the Welcome All soup lunch. I was hearing recently this lunch club has over 80 locals on their books, so it's brilliant to see a community group using the Centre so well.

We're also waiting with bated breath for the results of recent funding applications. It's looking very hopeful the ground floor conference room will get off the ground soon - possibly even in May - and these final requests will help us implement the plans in full so please pray for success. We continue to fund raise in the community and we have a Thrift shop running for 2 weeks (4th - 14th April) The first week is to fundraise for the conference room - this is the last push to make it happen - and the second is to help support refugees living in desperate conditions through the Red Cross and Medecins Sans Frontieres. So please bring us your spare stuff (toys, bric a brac, CDs etc) and remember to come & see if there's anything you'd like to buy too.