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Ripon church continues to care for God's Creation

First published on: 2nd April 2024

St Mary’s Embsay with Eastby is storming ahead with projects to help care for God’s Creation.

The Gold Eco Church, the first in our diocese, recently took part in Give to Go Green, a national digital match fundraising pilot to help churches raise money for projects to work towards our goal of carbon net zero by 2030.

After a couple of years of research and investigation, the church decided to move to a new electric heating system featuring under-pew heating in the nave, and FAR infra-red units discretely wall-mounted in the open areas of the church.

They have been looking to raise the funds for this in a variety of ways, with Give to Go Green providing one route to raise some of the money.

Peter Edwards, a member of the St Mary’s Cut the Carbon Team, said: “We decided that we would have two digital routes into Give to Go Green, one through the donate page on our website which would provide a direct link to our Give a Little account and the second would involve setting up a contactless terminal in the church.

“We were greatly assisted in this by Leeds Diocese loaning us a Payaz terminal for the six weeks of the campaign and, just as importantly, giving us clear advice and accessible support from Beth Vickers.

“We chose the period of February 1st to March 14th for the campaign as that would include our annual Gift Day as well as a fundraising concert.

“We then set about ensuring that donations to both of those could be made digitally, which involved the production and distribution of a leaflet to every house in the two villages.

“We also took the opportunity to explain what we were planning in one of our after-service chats by which we aim to keep people informed.

“Beside our two main fundraising sources, people have held voluntary events where we have taken the Payaz “on tour”.

“We have been very pleasantly surprised by the results of our GTGG campaign, receiving digital donations of just over £5000.

“There is a small transaction fee payable on these but the net income to St Mary’s will be around £4900, and we then have the match funding from GTGG in addition.

“In summary, our six weeks campaign will have raised a little under £10,000.

“There has also been an unexpected benefit from the publicity which has generated a wider understanding of the St Mary’s Cut the Carbon project in our community.”

The second round of Give to Go Green will be open in May of this year to more churches in our diocese, with details to come.

St Mary’s are always happy to share their eco expertise, and as part of that they are running an Eco Church Workshop on Sunday, May 12.

This free workshop will run from 2pm to 4.30pm, and is for anyone who is interested in the Eco Church Award Scheme.  

It will include a carousel of discussion groups on different Eco Church topics, including the five areas of the Award (Worship, Land, Buildings, Community & Global Engagement and Lifestyle) as well as the Net Carbon Zero target.  

There will be lots of opportunities to discuss problems encountered, and possible solutions, with other participants.  

Refreshments will be provided, and all are welcome.

Please book by emailing by Sunday, May 5.

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