Equipping for Life for a better future

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By March 2020, Equipping for Life already had more than 150 volunteers vetted and trained, working in schools and employability organisations in North and West Belfast, with plans for more to begin volunteering shortly.

Founded by Brother David Jardine in Spring 2018, Equipping for Life enables people of faith to volunteer time in communities that have been impacted by deprivation. We seek to equip people for a better life by our volunteers supporting existing education, employability and social cohesion initiatives.

Our Vision is: Lives transformed; communities revitalized.
Our Mission is: To equip people for a better future.
Our Values are: Faith, Integrity, Equality, Hope.
We have had many endorsements from key members of our community.
Click to see what they have said.

Profiles: the lowdown on …
We are already a large community working to support the children in our community.
Click here to meet a few of them.

Testimonials from participating schools
What do the teachers think of the EfL initiative?
Here extracts from two of our responses.
Genevieve McSorley, Principal
The children look forward to the extended reading time. They have the opportunity to talk about themselves and their work in school with an adult who is not officially part of the school i.e. a teacher or classroom assistant.
For some children, it is a time when they can read aloud in a safe environment where that they don’t feel judged by others in their class. For others, it is a chance to practice reading aloud and discuss their books at length.
Equipping for Life volunteers provide a further outlet to promote the love of reading and extend that enjoyment beyond the classroom. With this help we know our children can be lifelong readers and that is a wonderful gift to bestow upon a child.
Genevieve McSorley, Principal
Alison Hutchinson, Principal
The volunteer tutors in Harmony have shown commitment, positivity, patience, understanding and a real devotion to the pupils they work with and have formed wonderful bonds with them. They give an invaluable service to our children.

Alison Hutchinson
Harmony Primary School

Telling Tales from School
We have started a collection of anecdotes from our classrooms, both enlightening and entertaining, like the one below.
The Volunteer Tutors have received permission from parents to say a short prayer with the child before we begin reading. On one occasion a Volunteer forgot to say the prayer. The little girl leaned forward and in a low voice said, ' the prayer '.
Thank you to the volunteers for providing us with these anecdotes from the classrooms that you visit.
Please keep 'em coming!
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Book Donation
A kind benefactor donated £5000 to buy Christian books for the children on the Shankill. The books have been purchased, but are on hold because schools are closed at the moment. One of the Volunteers got advance copies of the books and started to use them with the children. The children loved them. So here are the names of some of the books.
Eric says sorry
Eric says thanks
Eric says please

You are special by Max Lucado (Candle Books )
Friends with God by Jeff White (Lifetree Group )

Equipping for Life, About