Evergreen Care Bexley is a registered charity that launched its first service in January 2014, and has been made possible by volunteers from across the local churches in Bexley, who have come together with a common purpose in response to identified needs of older and vulnerable people living in our community. It represents a commitment to the resolution of the dilemmas of ageing with God inspired solutions that respond to pressing and changing needs.
History so far…
The Evergreen Care Bexley vision has been born out of our experience of working with older people, and seeing the desperate needs that are, sadly, very often not being met. We believe there must be a much better way to treat people as they grow older and become more vulnerable.
In 2011, with 30 years experience of working with the elderly, 19 years of which as a Unit Manager in a residential care settings, I started my own homecare service in the Bexley Borough. Burdened by the need I saw in the community, I wanted to provide care and support that enriched each of my client’s lives, showing them they were loved and valued and to help them regain some self worth. I was soon very busy and other needs quickly became apparent which prompted Peter to start his own service, covering gardening and the more practical needs as well as some caring.
It was our Minister, Frank, who originally sent us a link to Evergreen Care Trust in Stamford, Lincs. At first, the project seemed far too large for us to even contemplate replicating here in Bexley, but as we were unable to help more and more people, we decided to contact the founder of Evergreen, Louise Marsh, and visit them at their offices.
After meeting with Louise and witnessing the unique care and support they provided to their clients, we felt compelled to reflect this level of care here in the Bexley Borough, and after much prayer, made the first steps towards forming Evergreen Care Bexley.
In February 2013, we held a conference and invited as many church leaders from across the borough as we could. Not knowing what to expect, we were astounded when 111 people attended representing 35 churches.
Since then, we have been amazed how God has raised up people to help us form the organisation, including a solicitor, accountant and a trainer and the number of people from across the church denominations who have offered to volunteer, 100+ so far, in all areas from befriending, admin and other areas of support.
Evergreen Care Bexley was officially launched on Saturday 28th September 2013, with a celebration event held at St John’s Church Welling. We are grateful to everyone who contributed to the event by providing entertainment; to St John’s Church for hosting the evening; and to all who came along, especially the volunteers. A big thank you also to those who kindly made a donation.
Bexley Churches Care Trust, trading under the name Evergreen Care Bexley, was registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales on the 15th November (reg no: 1154595).
Diane & Peter Kot.