18 May 2015
Green Pastures is a housing charity that won the 2011 Inspire award for their work housing the homeless and motivating the UK Church to tackle the issue.
Green Pastures,through their many partner projects, now house over 660 people permanently and have seen over 3,000 vulnerable adults become part of their local communities.
Green Pastures have partners working with ex-offenders in Pontefract, Wakefield, Stoke and Bolton. Prison Reform Trust data shows that nationally 46 per cent of adults re-offend within the first year. However, using an identical measurement, Green Pastures partners provide evidence in their region that their rates are down to as low as 12 percent.
Darron Armstrong started up the Be Strong project in Bolton to house ex-offenders, enabling them to get back on track. He provides training for participants to become washing machine engineers and this has developed into a social enterprise.
"We refurbish washing machines and sell them", said Darren. "It's simple and it allows the guys to move to the next level of their rehabilitation. We have even created a funky patio fire pit from unusable washing machine drums."
Pastor Pete Cunningham, co-founder of Green Pastures, said: "We are humbled and thrilled about what God is doing. We demonstrate the love of Christ and see lives transformed. Lives that were chaotic and that have in some ways been discarded by others.
"If every church had one house, the Church would make a major dent in the homeless statistics and see greater numbers of lives transformed."greenpastures.org