In 1992 the United Reformed Church (URC) launched Commitment for Life (CforL), a scheme raising money for key partners in the developing world through Christian Aid with the World Development Movement.
In 1996 CforL was re-launched with a special focus on the key countries of India, Palestine, Brazil and Zimbabwe. By 1999 the scheme had been a great success with many more advocates and a lot more churches getting involved.
A wider focus
CforL decided to widen its focus and started working on issues such as HIV/AIDS, formal grant giving and the involvement of young people.
Since then CforL has supported events such as Make Poverty History, launched a website, and changed key focus from Brazil to Jamaica.
There have also been advocate trips to all the key countries and visitors from those countries speaking at Synod and Church meetings. An internship, in partnership with Christian Aid, has been launched to work with a focus on Commitment for Life and the URC youth organisation, FURY. ‘I will show you my faith by what I do’ - James 2:18
2012 is the 20th anniversary of CforL, today more than 600 United Reformed Churches are CforL churches, and between them they have raised over half a million pounds each year for the past several years.
This means that the URC is Christian Aid’s biggest denominational giver. The current partner countries are Bangladesh, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Jamaica and Zimbabwe, and there are more than 25 advocates across the country going out and telling people what we are fighting for.
So what are the future plans for CforL? We want to raise the profile of the programme. With 42% of United Reformed Churches in the programme, increasing the number of churches involved could make a major impact on global poverty in our partner countries.
The programme is reviewing and re-energising its relationships with Christian Aid and the World Development Movement. It continues to strengthen FURY’s relationship with CforL and is encouraging greater involvement through the intern and the annual United Reformed Church Youth assembly.
Commitment for Life wants churches to be more motivated and concerned about injustice, we want to improve our relationships and work together for a better world. To read more visit www.cforl.org.uk
Any church that is interested in joining the successful scheme can get in touch with Linda Mead at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01702 315981.
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