Connect Team Stories

PennyAnne is one of our lovely volunteers and she wonderfully took the time to tell us some of her story in volunteering at Connect Centre in Wells.

"I can't quite remember how I became involved with Connect. I think I may have helped with a Christmas dinner. I offered literacy skills and creative writing. I'm currently happy helping out on a  Monday morning at the Breakfast Club 9:30am - 11am. I seem to have been making tea all my life, everywhere from London Welsh Rugby fixtures to Chilcompton Art Club exhibitions. 

My background and experience is as a teacher, youth and community worker and writer. At the moment I am also involved in doing poetry and story session at Towood Residential home, working at Downside Abbey helping to sort out the archives, a U3A play reading group, the W.I and I'm an enthusiastic walker and swimmer. 

I have worked with homeless projects in Wells and also I'm involved with the caring at Christmas initiative Julian Fellowship, Bristol. I have been homeless myself for short periods of time and feel 'shelter' for want of a better word, is of the utmost importance in order to lead a decent life. I appreciate how much Connect Centre does in terms of practical advice and outreach work across Mendip in places such as Wells, Glastonbury, Street and Frome. 

I enjoy the Monday Morning breakfast club being able to help in a practical way making tea, baked beans on toast and putting out the breakfast cereal for those attending but also talking to the people who come in, providing a cheerful and welcoming environment. I feel it can be so demoralising and lonely being without a home, that just doing 'a bit' at Connect on a Monday is worthwhile, and I think Liz and myself work well together. 

p.s. If we don't get a new toaster soon I'm flogging our present toaster on the Antiques Roadshow.

PennyAnne" 

Monday Mornings Breakfast Club and many other services provided across Connect wouldn't happen without such wonderfully committed volunteers whom we class as local heroes. PennyAnne, thank you for participating in your local community in this way. 

Connect Stories

Connect Centre Wells, Mendip, Homelessness, Community, Volunteer

Below is Sherryl's story of volunteering at Connect Centre. 

"Whilst searching google for a local Christmas volunteer opportunity in Mendip a few years ago I found the Elim Connect Centre in Wells. My family living and working far and wide were unable to get home for Christmas Day so I felt I might be useful elsewhere. Having contacted the centre in advance I went along Christmas morning unsure of what was expected of me, only to be warmly greeted by staff and other volunteers all total strangers so I was a little shy. Some like myself were new on the day and some were 'old hands' at the job so we were introduced and named tagged and ready for the day. 

I remember feeling immediately inspired by the enthusiastic organisation towards giving everyone the best of Christmas Day for whatever reason there were at the centre. I could see it in their faces and it was a sort of 'light bulb' moment for me. I was simply missing my family for a day but for many this was everyday life, just hoping for someone to stop and listen, understand and show they care.

I have helped at Connect on many subsequent Christmas lunches and now I am retired I help on weekly basis at the Wednesday Community Lunch in Wells as well as regularly helping in the office additionally.

It's become an important part of my week and I feel now that had I known somewhere like Connect back in 1981 at a 'wobbly' time in my life then it might have been so much better for me. Over time, I have a better understanding of what the Elim Connect Centre is all about. I feel a close bond with my fellow volunteers and appreciate the gratitude shown for our help in the social get togethers that are arranged as well as just a warm hug on a bad day given without a thought. 

A friend once said something that has remained with me to this day "Don't let your past take away your future." This is a helpful phrase and may be helpful to someone reading this story. "

We all have a story to tell that will encourage, comfort and inspire others to experience the warmth and generosity life has to offer as Sheryl has done. Thank you for sharing your story and for being part of the amazing team of volunteers at Elim Connect Centre.

Gathered Church

Every Sunday at Connect Centre in Wells there is a lively and sincere gathering of people who are keen to understand what it means to follow Jesus becoming the community of God here on earth.

The service time is 10:30am - 12pm (ish) because there are refreshments before, during and after the service. There are activities for children and teenagers so the Gathered church is family friendly. 

All are welcome to come along to explore the depths of life and faith together in an open and friendly environment. We are not perfect by any stretch of the imagination but we care most of all about people reaching the potential of full life. 

Any Bake Off Fans?

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We are just about the compile the Cake Baking Rota for next year. A call to all Bake Off fans…. would you like to makes some cakes to share on Sundays? It works out about one Sunday in eight.
 
We usually use around 50 portions of cake (small) to include children. Please indicate if nuts are used. Tray bakes work well as do biscuits. Please drop off to the kitchen before 10.30
If you would like to join the cake rota, please contact us and ask for Jim!

Homegrown Vegetable Boxes Now Available

The team and residents at the Dairy House have worked hard at the gardening project and are ready to sell their first harvest! These vegetables are locally sustainable produce with a big heart for the community and low carbon footprint.

You will be able to get a bag full of your choice of vegetables for £5 from Elim Connect Centre after the morning service (approx 12 midday). A huge range of freshly produced vegetables from our dairy house including potatoes, green beans, and pumpkin will be available for your choosing.

Most sundays veg boxes will be available that will directly aid the work that Elim Connect Centre does to support those who battle with homelessness and complex lifestyle issues.

This is a partnership journey for the guys and the plants who tend, water and nurture them to help rebuild their own lives.

if you would like to order a regular box, please leave your details in the office – you will get alot for £5!