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“Hardly anyone can ever find God because God is right at the end of your mind after all the background thoughts are gone.”
Maisie Satchwell-Hust

The Feast Youth Project 


Birmingham Game Changers



The Feast is an award-winning, innovative Christian youth charity that works with young people (11-18 years) of different faiths and ethnicities to help them make friends, talk about faith and be peacemakers in the world.

The charity started in Birmingham in 2009 and now works in Birmingham, Bradford, Luton and East London. It has also inspired work in Lebanon, Sudan, Switzerland, Latvia, Egypt, Australia and the USA.
 
The Feast is unique in its work with young people with its triple focus on identity formation, dialogue to bridge social divides and peacemaking. Consequently, the demand for our work has grown in recent years in a climate of increasing fears and divided communities.

In 2018, The Feast launched its new strategy “In Faith, We Dare to Imagine” in which the charity set out an ambitious plan to bring together more young people of different faiths and cultures than ever before from diverse and divided communities across the UK and model how honest and respectful dialogue and faith can be a positive force for change.
 
The name of the strategy alone indicates that The Feast recognises that we all live in a time that needs hope of a transformed world. With global trends towards austerity, populism, rising hate crime, terrorism, community isolation and increased fears and stereotyping of people different from ourselves becoming the dominant narrative in the media, The Feast instead asks young people to dare to imagine a transformed world. A world in which all people are confident in their beliefs and identity, embrace diversity, and are able to flourish alongside one another in peaceful, loving and inclusive communities.

The COVID-19 Pandemic has not only deepened both the social divides that already existed but also the desire for such a transformed world.
 
The Feast enables young people to get to experience others who are different from themselves through the sharing of food, fun activities and talking about faith and beliefs, and in so doing help them to dispel stereotypes, reduce fears and build genuine friendships across differences of faiths, cultures and life experiences.
 
The Feast delivers a range of programmes tailored for school, faith and community settings; including our Developing Identity, Building Bridges, Transforming Dialogue, Youth Encounters and the 1-year Game Changers Leadership Programme, all designed to help support young people to be more confident, dialogue across differences, build friendships across divides and be peacemakers.

To help achieve this, the “In Faith, We Dare to Imagine” strategy invites everyone who works with young people to join a movement committed to embedding The Feast’s Guidelines for Dialogue and approach across society as a model of hope. The Feast facilitates this by working with schools, faith and community groups, and other youth organisations to provide the training and resources for supporting young people to develop genuine friendships and dialogue across even deep social divides. 
 
As The Feast founder and Chair of Trustees, Dr Andrew Smith says: “If you have ever looked at what is happening in the world and despaired at the increasing violence, division and fear, look instead at our phenomenal young people who are stepping out in faith and showing us what loving your neighbour as yourself really means in today’s world.”
 
Or as 13-year old Omar puts it: “The Feast is amazing. It’s a life-changer.”
 

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COVID-19 Update: The pandemic and associated social distancing measures, particularly the closure of secondary schools, has severely impacted the ability of The Feast to reach and support young people throughout the time of lockdown. Many of the young people The Feast works with come from the 10% most deprived areas and so have been disproportionately affected by both the disease and the lack of online access. The Feast is working with partners to bridge this digital divide and has developed a new programme to support young people transition back into their schools in the Autumn.
 

For more information:

https://thefeast.org.uk