Judith volunteers at the Spring of Hope Women's Night Shelter once a week, travelling all the way down from Grantham each time. Here is her story:
"Although I live in Grantham, in rural Lincolnshire, I began a course in Theology at Trinity College in Bristol in 2012. I came to Crisis Centre Ministries on placement as a part of my course. Steve Smith ensured I had time with all the CCM projects, including a part-shift with Spring Of Hope just before Christmas. I really enjoyed my time on all of the projects at CCM, particularly as it is a faith based and faith funded charity and there is a real sense of God’s Holy Spirit at work there. However, my heart and prayers really led me back to focus on the Spring of Hope. When I first started volunteering there, one of the ladies was the same age as my Mum, which made a huge impact on me.
After my placement I returned to Spring of Hope as a volunteer, fitting this around college and work. A few months later I had to change jobs and couldn’t commit to volunteering. My final shift (or so I thought!) was the first night the ladies stayed in the new building. I asked Val to ‘keep the door open’ for me to return, but couldn’t see how I’d be able to do this.
In January 2015 Val asked me to cover a shift, which I agreed to. During my shift God told me to prioritise volunteering with Spring of Hope. I got a real sense that this was a special place where lives really do change and turn around. I knew that I wanted to be a part of that. My line manager adjusted my shifts to allow me to do this and I was able to commit to a regular slot. I knew I wanted to get to the point where I could take on the Duty Manager role and was surprised and delighted when Val emailed and asked if I’d like to do this!
As I’ve said ‘yes’ to God, He has opened up more opportunities for me to serve Him, and the ladies at Spring of Hope as well as providing for my day to day needs. Although I have looked into volunteering closer to home, I feel that Spring of Hope is very special and I want to continue to help the women that really need me. Even if I can’t connect with every person I meet at Spring of Hope, the conversations and breakthroughs I manage to have make driving down from Grantham each week worthwhile."