A new network member in Guernsey
Updated: Jun 10, 2020
A Channel Islands first
A warm welcome to Helen Sheppard, who is seniors coordinator at Holy Trinity Church, Guernsey, the Channel Islands. Helen is the first Anna Chaplaincy network member in the islands, bringing the total number nationally to 146!
She is married to Jon, and has a grown-up daughter and a teenage son. Helen has been worshipping at Holy Trinity since 2012 and says a few of her favourite things are 'a great book, gardening on a sunny day, arts and crafts and the colour yellow'.
'I feel so blessed to be able to draw alongside people over the age of 65 working from Holy Trinity Church in our beautiful Island home of Guernsey,' she says. 'This is the second largest of the Channel Islands, which is 23 square miles and home to 63,196 people, 13,216 of whom are over the age of 65.'
Reducing loneliness and isolation
'The aim of our ministry is to reduce loneliness and isolation and provide support spiritually, emotionally, practically and socially to people of all faiths, or of none.
'I work alongside an amazing team providing, in normal circumstances, a regular and varied activity programme including an annual tea dance to celebrate the Islands' liberation from occupying forces on the 9 May 1945, which is a very special day in our calendar.'
Seeing people grow and flourish
'As our activity programme was put on hold due to coronavirus, this gave me a wonderful opportunity to get to know some individuals on a deeper and more personal level over the telephone, and provide for them all a weekly newspaper to help maintain a connection.
'I feel it is such a gift to be a friend and draw alongside people as they gain confidence accessing the activities, making friends and seeing them grow and flourish.'