Member’s Profile: East Belfast Mission
Belfast City Centre Chaplaincy is an innovative Pastoral Care service operating within Belfast City Centre. Initiated by The Methodist Church in Ireland, it is staffed by trained volunteer Chaplains drawn inter-denominationally from across Belfast’s churches. The Chaplaincy provides Pastoral Care to people working or living in Belfast City Centre. Many people have found that, at times of stress, being able to share in absolute confidence with a trained listener is a huge help. The Chaplaincy also provides trained mediators. Disagreement is a natural part of our relationships, including those in work, sometimes disagreeing parties can be greatly helped by an outside neutral facilitator to help them reach agreement. The Chaplaincy also works with those who are sleeping on the City Centre Streets, seeking to work with them and the Statutory Agencies to find long term solutions to the problems that have led to homelessness. All the Chaplaincy’s services are provided free of charge.
Q: What is your business?
Pastoral Care for people working or living in Belfast City Centre
Q: How did you get into this business?
As a Church leader I came to passionately believe that the Church must demonstrate to wider society that it can be relevant and that we should be deploying our particular skill-set of care for people not only with Church members – but with the community, including the City Centre Community.
Q: How many people do you employ?
We have 6 volunteers now and hope to double this to 12 volunteer Chaplains during 2019.
Q: Who are your customers?
Anyone in Belfast City Centre in need of some TLC!
Q: How has business been for you over the past few years?
We are a ‘new start’ (July 2018). We have found a lot of demand.
Q: What needs to change in Belfast/NI to allow you (and others) to do better business?
The current provision of health and welfare services is wholly inadequate – and the City Centre is suffering some of the consequences.
Q: Have you any exciting plans for your business over the next 12 months?
Yes, we hope to double the number of our volunteers – and start a Sunday morning ‘City Centre Community Brunch’, from 10am to 11:30am, for Sunday workers.