Connect > Blog > 290 hours of coaching in a year - and counting!
290 hours of coaching in a year - and counting!
18th May 2020
At TLG, we are so thankful for the incredible, ongoing work of our church partners, who are continuing to support struggling children and families during this time of lockdown. Now, more than ever, feelings of isolation, anxiety and anger are heightened. Lis, Early Intervention Coordinator in South Wales, shares a little bit of her story and the impact TLG Early Intervention has had in her local community.
“About two years ago we really felt that God was calling us to do more - to be more intentional, to help a specific group; that group being children and families. Our journey of discovery, searching and praying started. It became clear early on that God was directing us down a specific path. After many meetings and talks with some amazing people, we were put in touch with the national children’s charity Transforming Lives for Good (TLG) and our collaboration with them started.
TLG has been working with struggling children and families for over 20 years through a variety of programmes, one of those being TLG Early Intervention. The TLG Early Intervention programme works as a joint partnership between local schools and churches across the UK. The school identifies a student that may be having issues in the classroom setting, facing personal problems in their home life or just struggling generally. The church then buddies them up with a coach who has been trained by TLG. A coach works specifically with that child for one hour every week in the school day for at least a year. They use play, craft and chat to help the child to see there is a hope and a future through whatever they may be facing.
As a church, we’ve been able to place ten coaches in three local schools this past year, so far giving over 290 hours to these children. Some of the coaches have finished their year now, and are waiting for the schools to re-open to start coaching another child that the school has identified. Some of the coaches are still going through this period of lockdown giving weekly phone call chats with their students and the families, offering extra help and support where needed. Through TLG Early Intervention, children are given time to talk and be listened to, to share if they want to, and to have that continuity of a familiar face every week. It’s their time, their space. They have fun and work through some of the issues they are finding hard, with the help of the brilliant resources that have been created for this project.
We also get to have contact with the families, building on the relationship with the child and growing that help and support base. As a church, as coaches and personally - as the Early Intervention Coordinator - we’ve been so blessed this past year. The relationships that we’ve made and built on with the local schools, children and families and as a team has been wonderful.
We know that when we do get back into the schools, either to carry on or to be introduced to our new child, we’re going to see even more amazing things happen. As you can probably tell I’m really passionate about this charity and their work they are doing up and down the country!”
The Bridge Church in Chepstow is one of 152 churches partnered with TLG in running the Early Intervention programme. What a story of encouragement! Those 290 hours will have transformed the lives of so many children.
We are all too aware of the huge number of children who were struggling in school before Covid-19, as well as the disruption and difficulties Covid-19 is bound to cause when children are able to return to mainstream education. How will children and families re-adjust back to the “new normal”? Who will be there to help support children in the transition back to school after such a long time out of education? How can the local church be part of the answer?
As Lis’s testimony has shown, TLG Early Intervention gives the church a powerful, practical solution to support children, families and schools in their community. Could you become an Early Intervention centre and help children in your local area?
Click here to find out more about setting up an Early Intervention programme in partnership with TLG today.
Jasmine Le Ny
Jasmine graduated from The University of Sheffield in the summer of 2019, and has been working for TLG since. She's worked within the Volunteer Programmes and Supporter Relations teams, and is now serving TLG within Comms and Influence. A lover of the outdoors and cooking, she is passionate about seeing the local church in action to support the most vulnerable in society.