News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

Gateway Centre picbanner.jpg
Gateway Centre, Launceston
Gateway Centre pic.jpg
Gateway Centre, Launceston
World News

Community hub which helps bring people to Jesus appeals for £40,000 to prevent closure

by Donna Birrell

A church-run community centre in Cornwall is at risk of closure unless £40,000 can be raised by the end of the month.

The hub, which is run by the Elim Pentecostal church, is facing a funding shortfall, largely due to escalating energy costs. The money is needed to keep the project viable for the next six months while the centre secures new funding and signs a new ten year lease with Cornwall Council.

The centre, which is the only day centre in the rural town of Launceston in north Cornwall has been at the heart of the community since 2013. It was set-up by Gateway Church to be a place where social needs such as isolation, loneliness and poor mental health could be met by welcoming everyone in and signposting them to the correct advisors and multi-agencies. Today the project is a thriving hub which many in the community make use of on a weekly basis.

Project lead Rev Kevin Pickup told Premier Christian News: “We try to tackle a host of social issues, we also work with people with learning difficulties and we do a lot of work within the homeless community. We also run various projects, including the Community Cafe, which provides an outreach for individuals to come and be encouraged loved, welcomed, and signposted to relevant organisations. We also outsource some of the space to places like a money advice programme. We've got a gym on site, a child-minding service, we have the Army Cadets, table tennis, and a whole range of activities taking place in this small community hub.”

Rev Pickup says around eight per cent of the community use the facility, which is around a thousand people. Many adults and young people with neurodiversity and other disabilities attend the clubs, groups and cafe and support workers are able to bring them to the centre for fun, laughter and friendship. He says the centre would be sorely missed:

“As a church community, we're doing a lot of prayer and fasting, but we're asking the wider community to come together with us to pray. This project is really important in our community and it would be devastating and have an impact if it was to go so we're asking people to pray with us.

“We’re probably not alone – I imagine church programmes and Christian activities across the country are in similar situations to us. Our income this year has increased by £30,000, so we've been really excited and impressed with that, and thankful to the Lord. But at the same time, we have seen that our fixed energy costs etc, have gone up by £70,000 this year. It has really hit as hard as a community project.”

Rev Pickup says that many people who have come to the Gateway Centre have also come to know Jesus:

“Even in the last year alone, we've seen dozens of people make commitments. They come in, maybe a little bit apprehensive, and wonder whether they’re going to be converted as it’s a Christian building. But over time, we build relationships, and our staff are trained to encourage and to help and to just talk through life issues with people. We find that actually, people want to learn more about Jesus and about faith. And we've seen people who have come to faith through that and we've had baptisms. Faith is a really important cornerstone to what we do here.

“It would break our hearts if we have to close because we've found an opportunity for us as a church community to reach out, to have a position of influence, and to love people and to bring them to Christ. And maybe the enemy is at work, but we're fighting him and we're reclaiming the land that has been won for Jesus."

A crowdfunding page has been set-up to help raise money for the appeal. More information can be found here.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email