At the Evangelical Alliance we have been looking for ways to engage, equip and inspire Christians to step into the UK’s current unemployment crisis, both in prayer and action. There are people in desperate need of the sustenance and sense of worth that work provides. As Christians step in to provide this material need, we believe opportunity will follow to point people to Jesus ⁠— the ultimate provider of worth ⁠— offering identity in Him as redeemed children of God.

As part of our job creation project, we want to signpost to organisations and initiatives that are also championing Christian action in the unemployment crisis.

Last week, Cinnamon Network UK, together with The Mercers’ Company, launched their annual incubator competition. The competition seeks to find brilliant church-led social action projects and replicate that work in other churches across the country. This year, Cinnamon want to find a project that will help churches build capacity to support adults and young people back into employment.

Cinnamon wants to find local initiatives that are already:


• helping individuals retrain;

• building confidence and skills;

• providing connections to work;

• creating employment opportunities;

• offering mentoring and coaching;

• developing apprenticeships;

• or reaching those not in education, employment or training.

These may be projects that are encouraging local employers to consider candidates who may otherwise not get an interview; helping ex-offenders gain employability skills; or mentoring young adults who struggle to engage in employment, education and training.

Five finalists will be selected and will get a place on the Cinnamon Incubator Programme. Over the course of two years, they’ll receive teaching and coaching to help them put in place strong foundations, make key connections and develop the capacity to grow.

The value of the support provided on the Cinnamon Incubator Programme is more than

£21,000. Judges will also choose two projects to be awarded a £25,000 development grant.

If your church is running an initiative that supports adults and young people back into employment, head to the Cinnamon Network UK website to find out how to apply.

Amanda Bindon, co-chief executive of Cinnamon Network said: Unemployment can have a devastating impact on individuals and families. Churches at the heart of communities across the country are uniquely positioned to respond with care and compassion. By finding excellent projects already making a difference and helping them to replicate, we want to help more churches be part of the solution.”

Cinnamon Network UK shares the Evangelical Alliance’s belief that if every church were to step into this area of need, the impact on our society could be incredible.

In April, we released a prayer fuel pack in which we invite the reader to thank God for the work of Cinnamon Network UK and other organisations working in the area of job creation. The Bible tells us that work is intrinsic to who we are as image-bearers of God. We hope and pray this resource will deepen your understanding of this truth as well as equip you to grapple with the UK’s current unemployment crisis and provide fuel and direction for prayer as we ask for God’s help.