Why should we consider setting up a Movement for Recovery in our town/city?

Our main challenge as the Church is that we are not as coordinated and strategic as we could be. Often each church or charity does its own thing without much consultation with other churches or the public sector. We are in danger of duplication of effort and diluting the effect that working together as one body can produce. 

The Movement for Recovery Idea 

Our vision is to harness together the extensive work that Christians undertake serving across the UK, by creating a network of networks that enables a more strategic and coordinated response to the recovery. This would create an engagement and delivery vehicle based on a hub and spokes model, where engagement and strategy is undertaken by a small centralised body that then releases funding and creates support structures to the many churches and Christian charities across the town/city. 

The Opportunity

In conversations with civic leaders, we are being challenged to get our act together and become more coordinated and strategic going forward. 

From their point of view this will provide the following benefits:

  1. Engagement: It provides one group that the public and private sector can engage with. It is too confusing and too time-demanding to relate to all church denominations and charities individually. The crisis demands speed of action, response and clear pathways for delivery on outcomes.
  1. Delivery: Operating as a larger network of networks this model can harness the size, spread, assets and experience of the Christian Church and deliver tangible results. 


Operating in a more coordinated and strategic way enables us to:

  • Engage with the public and private services and wider VCFSE sector
  • Attract funding from the public and private sector
  • Learn best practice from each other
  • Support each other by sharing resources and offering support 
  • Work more effectively by reducing duplication and increasing the scope of the ministry we are offering 
  • Better reflect our unity in Christ Jesus as one body
  • Gathering the on-the-ground intelligence to focus support to the greater needs
  • Connecting to community hubs and other on-the-ground services



This a suggested 4-stage approach but it can be tailored to the specific needs of each city/town dependent upon the maturity of your unity group and the existing infrastructure and systems. 


1. Create an initial core team of 3-4 like-minded pioneers/apostles from the region and establish an enabling team with key leaders/influencers from church and charity leaders (c 10 people). Ensure cross-denominational support and engagement.

2. Agree a remit for the enabling team and write a vision document for M4R for your town/city

3. Conduct an audit of all the social activity being delivered by churches and charities in your region (research/survey)


4. Engage with Mayor/County Council leader – build relationship and ask what YOU can do for them

5. Set up a call with all the church and Christian charity leaders with the Mayor/CC Leader

    a) Ask some of the key church/charity leaders to share about their social action initiatives and work delivered throughout Covid

    b) Ask the Mayor/CC Leader to respond and deliver a ‘challenge’ to the churches to work together and provide a single place of contact for the Mayor/CC Leader.

6. Approach the key influencers/social action project leaders within the boroughs/region and ask them to come on board as borough/regional connectors to share the M4R vision and encourage the work in the regions. 


7. Agree the legal entity for the group to deliver a single contact, phone number and address

   a) Establish a charity (could be linked to an established charity to minimise set-up work)

        i. Trustees

       ii. Terms of ref

       iii. Bank account

  b) Fundraising

      i. Churches/individuals

      ii. Central Govt

      iii. Grants

   c) Recruit a coordinator


8. Regular meetings with the enabling team and borough connectors to discuss progress and provide necessary encouragement, direction and resources

   a) Regular cycle of surveys and research via enabling team/borough connectors to understand the extent of services being offered via churches/charities in the area

   b) Work with local authority to apply for grants and feed through to the work in the boroughs

  c) Feedback regularly to Mayor/CC leader to update on progress and impact – ensure that the stories from the regions and boroughs are fed back locally and nationally

  d) If required, use the M4R Web site template to create a city-based M4R Web site in each town/city working groups would be formed to facilitate specific aspects of delivery around the recovery and renewal of their place, looking at a variety of social action provision such as:

  • No Child Hungry
  • Food banks
  • Youth work
  • Mental Health support
  • Debt relief and unemployment response team
  • Supporting homeless families
  • Social Isolation 


N.B.  It is important to underline that Movement for Recovery is not about replacing, competing with or overshadowing existing organisations and ministries, it is about a Network of Networks where we all flourish and gain support so we can be even better at serving the people of the town/city.  


Over time the Movement for Recovery may also evolve into catalysing new forms of better strategic coordination in other areas such as supporting Christians in the spheres of life, creating a more strategic approach to starting new churches and charities, and developing the skills of leaders. This expansion may require a separate but related legal and financial status. 


How could this be structured?

  • For each town/city it is proposed that either a new charity or CIO is formed, or the activity is hosted by an existing Charity:
  • To employ (or redeploy from an existing organisation) a small team of enablers to provide the support needed for the Movement.
  • It’s envisaged that the main sources of income from this project will come from the following sources: 
  • Churches, networks, charities and individuals would join the Movement as partners and pay a partnership contribution
  • Churches, networks and charities may be able to provide personal and resources in kind
  • Trust funds and major donations
  • Infrastructure support from local and central Government

Those churches, networks, charities and individuals who wish to be part of the wider Movement would be committed to the following principals: 

  1. Celebrating what is already going on across the many churches, charities and individuals 
  1.   Connecting with each other relationally building a community of friendship and trust. And a 

      willingness to connect with the public, private and VCFSE sector to become part of solution to 

      the recovery across the region. 

  1.   Coordinating our activity to reduce duplication and encourage strategic working together.
  1.   Catalysing new activities across the region.
  1.   Commissioning Christians in the major spheres of life to be part of the recovery and renewal  

      of the town/city


Next Steps


The aim of this half-day training event is to equip city unity teams who are considering Movement for Recovery for their town or city. 

The training will cover areas such as vision, structure, team, how to conduct an audit, engaging with civic leaders and much more! 

Come and join us to find out how Movement for Recovery could help Churches and organisations in your town or city become more strategic and coordinated, to help bring transformation and renewal to your place. 

Check our events page for the latest training dates. 

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact info@gathermovement.org


Movement for Recovery Learning Community

We will be meeting each month, on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, at 14:00, for just 40 minutes. 

Why should you attend? 

  • Be inspired by listening to stories from other M4R cities
  • Pick up advice, hints and tips from cities that are further along the M4R road, than you
  • Learn best practice
  • Access free M4R resources
  • Find out the latest news about funding 
  • Hear great input from the M4R Core Team and some of our partners, such as TearFund, Bible Society, EA and the Palau Association.  

Who should attend?

  • New city unity teams who are still evolving and growing
  • Established city unity teams who would like to share their experience and continue to learn from other town/city leaders  
  • Church/charity leaders who have attended the M4R 1/2-day training session

To join the monthly M4R Learning Community, please sign up here, we’d be delighted to see you: 

Register in advance for the M4R Learning Community:



If you have any questions, or would like to discuss your Movement for Recovery with a member of the team, please contact info@gathermovement.org