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Minutes of the Co-ordinating Committee Meeting held in
The Salvation Army Hall, on Wednesday, 29 May 2013 at 7:30 pm

Purpose of Meeting: A forum for ‘communion’ and communication between PACT churches, PACT organisations and local Christians, to facilitate events aimed at increasing opportunities for joint worship, witness and work between PACT churches

Present: Peter Hollins (Chair), Linda Cawsey (Secretary), Carolyn and David Barton, Hilary Bonney, John Callaghan, Tim Concannon, Rosemary Davies, Vanessa Dowse, Simon Mason, Linda Read, Richard Saunders, John Studd, Christine Tully,
In attendance: Caroline Creese, Area Manager for Christians Against Poverty, and Mr. Creese

1. Presentation on Christians Against Poverty: Caroline presented a brief video on the work of CAP. Established in 1996, CAP is a Christian organisation with 247 centres working with those struggling with debt. Its aim is to have 500 CAP Debt Centres throughout the UK. In the first instance local CAP representatives visit clients in their own homes. Each Debt Centre has a team of volunteer befrienders who support clients practically and emotionally. In addition, they have the support of a designated team of Debt Advisers based in the CAP offices in Bradford. A budget is drawn up for each client with the help of the Debt Advisers and CAP negotiates with all creditors to form repayment plans for priority as well as non-priority debts. Each client is given a CAP account which acts like a simple bank account. The client makes regular payments into their CAP account to cover their repayments.

In question time, Caroline said that there was about a 66% success rate in getting people back on an even keel. Her own Centre in Bognor Regis cost about £21,000 per annum to cover the costs of a part-time Manager and staff and support from CAP’s Debt Advisers. This was funded by the churches. They worked closely with the local CAB and other social services.
The Committee subsequently agreed to delay any further consideration until they had had time to assimilate the information that had been left with them and also to speak to the nearest Centre which appeared to be in Southsea. It would be considered again at the next meeting in September.

2. Introduction: Peter opened with a reading from 2 Chronicles Ch. 1 followed by prayer.

3. Apologies for absence: Received from Judith Bee, Emma Dean, Brian Edwards, Andy Hall, Will Hughes, Helen Mason and Lindy Young.

4. Minutes for 13th March 2013: Agreed.

5. Matters arising:

6. Report on events since last meeting:

7. Treasurer’s Report: Christine reported that users of the Craft Bank had now been clarified. A cheque for £687 had been received from Waitrose plus a late donation which meant that £700 was now already available for the Christmas lunch 2013. Every PACT church had now paid their annual subscription.

Christine referred to a Food Bank report received by the Social Concerns Committee on 20th May. There was approx. £1,000 in hand in the PACT account and some £900 had been spent on the purchase of tokens for perishables and items supplementing food donations. Specific needs identified were for tinned meat products, puddings, beverages, household goods and toiletries.

8. External Events & Campaigns on the PACT Website: John reported on the number of requests received by the Webmaster for advertising external events on the PACT website. It was agreed that these could be advertised in a separate section of the website which gave a disclaimer in respect of content of these other websites. In addition, the Webmaster would seek confirmation from the Chair of PACT (and Secretary if required) that any such item could be posted on the PACT website. It would be for the Chair and Secretary to determine whether they constituted a direct conflict with services and activities within the PACT area.

A PDF Copy of these minutes may be downloaded by clicking on this link

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