‘Boost’ is a small registered charity based in Felixstowe, which was begun to pioneer partnerships between faith and education. It was established in 2000 as part of a collective effort from churches across Felixstowe, Walton and the Trimley’s to enable more and better youth work happening across the area.
In a time of great change in 2014, and after over a year of planning and preparation, ‘Boost’ took a leap of faith and launched ‘Academy Chaplaincy’, a unique partnership with the Felixstowe Academy, which saw Josh Hunt, their youth worker, taking up a placement in the new school building as a full-time chaplain. Over these past five years Josh has been a consistent and available chaplain for both students and staff, to what is, the town’s only high school.
“We want to inspire other communities to pioneer partnerships between faith and education and we hope the benefits of chaplaincy can be unlocked in many more communities across the UK.”
Josh has been overwhelmed at how the chaplaincy has been able to benefit students, staff, and the whole community too. Being a teenager today presents unique challenges which didn’t exist even a few years ago and ‘Boost’ seeks to help students work through them, and live life to the full in order to reach their full potential.
‘Boost’ have been given an ‘excellent’ rating by Ofsted
In working to achieve their aim of ‘pioneering partnerships between faith and education’ Boost do that through supporting students and staff, exploring faith, and building community. This takes the form of a variety of activities and projects, including year-round assemblies, after school clubs, bereavement support, mentoring, help in transition to high school, and even a new school garden project ! These activities are constantly changing to meet the needs of the school community they serve.
‘Boost’ is a small charity with limited resources, which they want to be good stewards of, so they regularly evaluate their work, collect feedback, and hold partnership review meetings. They even have a team of ‘Chaplaincy Youth Ambassadors’ who help to give the charity a ‘nudge’ in the right direction, and in recognition of the work they are doing, ‘Boost’ have been given an ‘excellent’ rating by Ofsted. Commenting on that Josh says, “While that’s not the be all and end all, it is fantastic to be recognised externally as doing a good job.”
Outside of the day to day running of the chaplaincy, Josh regularly speaks and presents at Churches, as well as educational focused events and conferences. Josh continues, “We want to inspire other communities to pioneer partnerships between faith and education and we hope the benefits of chaplaincy can be unlocked in many more communities across the UK.”
For further information you can contact ‘Boost’ via their website: www.boostfelixstowe.org.uk/chaplaincy