In Session Five – What Might New Life Be About – we will share stories of how we come alongside those who find themselves in difficult circumstances. All too often this is connected with money worries, which is why in February many churches are raising awareness about Loan Sharks (illegal money lenders). Caroline Clarke, Diocesan Community Engagement Advisor explains:
We wouldn’t tolerate sharks swimming in the shallow waters where our children splash and play, so why do we put up with loan sharks who can destroy lives just as effectively? The fear and isolation that some people feel are so deep, it’s like being locked in a dark, windowless room. There can be liberty for those held captive like this – and we can help unlock that door. Venerable Simon Burton-Jones, Archdeacon of Rochester
Our Stop Loan Sharks campaign is running throughout February in Kent, the Medway Towns and the London Boroughs of Bromley and Bexley. This is in response to the plight of individuals and families whose lives are being destroyed by the illegal and threatening practices of loan sharks to enforce repayments. Loan sharks charge exorbitant rates of interest and use bullying tactics such as threats, intimidation and violence to enforce repayments from borrowers, which is leaving families with severe debt, causing misery and destroying lives.
“I think its great that the churches are bringing everyone together to tackle a modern issue”. Douglas Rosen, 18.
The Stop Loan Sharks campaign is being led by the churches in the diocese of Rochester in partnership with the Illegal Money Lending Team, our four local Credit Unions , West Kent Debt Advice and Christians Against Poverty.
How you can get involved:
Here are some suggestions, but please feel free to do your own thing and let me know: we would love to put your event and photos on our Facebook page and website.
- Show our film in your church or school, and share it with your family, friends and colleagues.
- Get your friends together and give out the flyers in your local area, shops, etc.
- Attend one of the events: see the Diocesan website for details.
- If you show the film or plan to do an event, please let Caroline know so that we can publicise it for you, and do send in your photos (with permission) for our website and facebook page.
- You may also like to check out the Stop Loan Sharks page on www.stoploansharks.co.uk www.facebook.com/stoploansharksproject www.twitter.com/loansharknews
Together lets get this message out and be part of transforming our communities: THANK YOU