Three organisations will exhibit under the Churches for All banner at CRE 2018 – each committed to improving universal access to church buildings and programmes.
The initiative comes at a time when 10 million adults in the UK have a recognised disability – about one in five of the adult population. A further 700,000 children have one or more disabilities.
Exhibiting on stand B5, Churches for All is a partnership of UK Christian disability organisations. Count Everyone In, The Lodge Trust, and Torch Trust, all members of the association, will be at CRE offering visitors a breadth of experience and depth of knowledge on disability issues.
Churches for All’s Mark Arnold has a son with additional needs.
‘Additional or special needs parenting is tough because there is so much more to cope with,’ he says. ‘An increasing numbers of diagnoses in children at one end of the age range, coupled with an increasing older population at the other, present a huge ministry area for churches that is growing all the time.
‘Everyone, including those with additional needs and disabilities, should be included and valued in church. I hope to inspire CRE visitors as their churches plan to become fully-inclusive.’
Gordon Temple, executive officer for Churches for All, says: ‘CRE presents a great opportunity to support and encourage churches as they strive to welcome, include and involve people living with disabilities in every aspect of church life.’
The Torch Trust is promoting Sight Loss Friendly Church, a new initiative to enable churches to become more inclusive of people with sight loss. Count Everyone In aims to enthuse local churches about being more welcoming and relevant to people with learning disabilities through their new Know and Grow training while the Lodge Trust provides spiritual support to adults with learning disabilities.
• Mark Arnold and team will speak on Churches for All at 12pm on Tue 16 Oct
Click here for a list of more than 200 exhibitors at CRE 2018
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