Where has the last year gone we ask ourselves? Well for Josie, the Vincentian Volunteer here at Somewhere Else, it has flown by. Although Josie wasn't able to meet some of the wider community (as we remain closed at present), then during her final two months she was able to meet come of our facilitators, as we trialled different types of bread making to help with our decisions about the way forward after lockdown. It was great for a few facilitators to say farewell to her at SWE, rather than online - see the News page.
During the year, Josie learnt how to bake bread for the first time via Zoom and joined in with our monthly Saturday Zoom baking sessions. She was in charge of posting regularly on our Instagram page and led a session of our Lent Reflection meetings, which she then videod for our Facebook pages. With Lorraine, our administrator, and Chris, our One Programme Participant, she baked bread and turned it into cheese sandwiches to take out to the homeless, as well as helping to make and distribute the toiletries bags, which we also distribute to the homeless of Liverpool city centre. The trustees utilised her mathematical and IT skills to help to conduct and collate a survey amongst the facilitators concerning reopening. Josie was also a regular participating observer at the monthly Circuit meetings held on Zoom. It might not have been the year that she was expecting, but we hope that she now feels part of the SWE community.
We shall miss Josie and wish her all the very best as she moves over the border to Yorkshire to begin her new job! A massive THANK YOU to her for all that she has contributed to the "online" life of SWE.
Hello! My name is Josie and I’m the Vincentian Volunteer with Somewhere Else for the year 2020-21. I’m from Bolton and I’ve just graduated after studying Maths in Oxford for three years. In spending this year volunteering, I’m keen to contribute to exciting organisations like Somewhere Else while having the chance to learn from the people I’m working with. In my spare time I enjoy doing yoga, love a good puzzle, and am learning to code.
I’m really looking forward to getting to know everyone involved in Somewhere Else, getting to grips with bread making, and seeing what community can look like in these strange times.
"Vincentian Volunteers are Christian young people aged 18-35, from all over the world, who commit a year of their lives to the service of vulnerable people. During their year with us, they live in a community of three or four people and engage in voluntary work in partnership with other, well known charity organisations in order to help the impoverished, the homeless, the disabled, refugees and those suffering with addictions within the local community."
Risma was our Vincentian volunteer for 2019-2020.
Risma is from Indonesia. She used to work for Unilever, but decided to volunteer with the Vincentian Volunteer movement for a year, as she felt called to do this.
One of six children, Risma is the second eldest. She kept in touch with her family via Skype; to share her experiences of living and working in Manchester and Liverpool.
The following photographs were all taken at our 'Farewell Picnic in the Park' a few days before Risma returned home to Indonesia. "Hover over the image to read the caption for each picture."
We said farewell to Karoline on Thursday, 27th June by presenting her with a copy of The Message Bible. Andrew Lovelady led Reflections that day during which he talked about "Being connected". Members of the community then tied a knot in a pink and also a white piece of wool, which was then attached to one of our cards. This then became a bookmark for her new Bible so that whenever she sees the bookmark; she is reminded of the community of Somewhere Else.
Karoline returns to Michigan at the start of July. She hopes to continue to bake bread, especially for her family.
Read Karoline's kind words about her time volunteering at Somewhere Else.
Why did you become a volunteer and what's it like to be a Vincentian Volunteer at the Bread Church?
These were the questions we asked Karoline when we wanted to find out why she became a Vincentian Volunteer. This is what she wrote.
Hello, my name is Karoline Knedgen and I am the Vincentian Volunteer working at the
Bread Church for the 2018-2019 year. I am from Detroit, Michigan, USA and I am a recent
graduate from Michigan State University. I am have a degree in Human Biology with a minor in Health Promotion.
I chose to do a missionary year because I didn’t know what my next step after university
was. What I did know was that I wanted to live a life centred on serving others and I knew the
best way to do that was to do a service year. I chose to volunteer in Britain because I knew I
might never get another chance to live outside of the States again. I heard about Vincentian
Volunteers through the Catholic Volunteer Network, a search engine website for Catholic and
Christian volunteer programs.
My favorite aspect of volunteering at Somewhere Else is that I can see and get to know
people different than myself and start to understand a world outside of my own. The aspect of
volunteering I like the most is doing background work, like setting up the table before everyone arrives or doing the dishes. This allows other volunteers to not worry about the little thing and focus more on other things, like greeting people and helping first timers make bread.
If I invited someone to dinner and told them about Somewhere Else, I would invite my
parents. I would tell them that the Bread Church is Christ-Centered but isn’t a normal church
where they have service and sermons every day. But rather, a place where any and everyone can come to make and break bread together, socialize, and use any or all talents they may have to help others. The people that come to the Bread Church come to be a part of a community greater than themselves.
"Vincentian Volunteers are Christian young people aged 18-35, from all over the world, who commit a year of
their lives to the service of vulnerable people. During their year with us, they live in a community of three or four people and engage in voluntary work in partnership with other, well known charity
organisations in order to help the impoverished, the homeless, the disabled, refugees and those suffering with addictions within the local community.
We are a Christian organisation with a mission to provide care and support to those in need, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity and gender."