Gardening projects

Inter-Generational Gardening

Faiths Forum for London is working with young people aged 16-18 from faith communities in six boroughs to help improve at least 8 small pieces of derelict ground and transform them into pleasant community spaces.

Each youth volunteer is matched with retired people from a different faith background who are willing to pass on their gardening skills and enthusiasm to a new generation. FFL is looking for 100 young people to take part and at least 20 mentors.

If you are a faith group, a volunteering organisation or a school and are interested in taking part in this project, please contact

If you are aged 16-18 and live in East London, or are a faith community in East London, FFL wants to hear from you. Join us for a 3 day community gardening project.

For more information, or to register, please contact

Visitors from Berlin | Monday 30 January

berlinAs part of our European strand of work, LBFN is delighted to host a reception for distinguished guests from the city of Berlin.

Join us at Collaboration House, 77 Charlotte Street, W1T 4PW, at 5-6pm on Monday 30 January.  Register your place here.

We will hear from

  • Dr Thomas Schimmel, Director, 1219 Religions- und Kulturdialog, Berlin
  • Pasha Shah, Integration and Faith Division, Department of Communities and Local Government, UK
  • Katharina Smith-Müller, Inter Faith Advisor, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales
  • Dr Thomas Wipf, Swiss reformed theologian and Moderator, European Council of Religious Leaders
  • Pastor Peter Jorgensen, Community of Evangelical Free Churches, Berlin
  • Elizabeth Harris-Sawczenko, Director, Council of Christians and Jews, UK
  • Representative of Hartmut Rhein, Commissioner for Churches and Religious and Philosophical Communities, Mayor’s Office, Berlin (tbc)
  • Catriona Robertson, Convener, London Boroughs Faiths Network, and Interim Director, Christian Muslim Forum, UK

Interfaith, Cities and Government is a new project launched by the European Council of Religious Leaders (Religions for Peace), bringing together interfaith leaders and local governments from European cities, to share best practice, exchange knowledge, and explore collaboration. The visit to London follows a meeting at Berlin Town Hall in October 2016 which included London Boroughs Faiths Network, Faiths Forum for London, the Metropolitan Police and the European Council of Religious Leaders.

The reception ends at 6pm but our guests have kindly agreed to stay on for some informal networking until 6.30pm.

EU election hustings

Faiths Forum for London is organising a series of hustings, ahead of the EU elections on 22 May, supported by Europe House.  The first is this weekend, on Sunday 30 March 5-7pm at The Sternberg Centre, 80 East End Road, Finchley, London N3 2SY.

EU electionsThe line-up includes:

Marina Yannakoudakis MEP, Conservative Party
Jean Lambert MEP, Green Party (Invited)
Ivana Bartoletti, Labour Party MEP candidate
Jonathan Fryer, Liberal Democrats MEP candidate
Gerard Batten MEP, UKIP (Invited)

There will be two further hustings in the series, one at an Islamic centre and the other at a Hindu temple.  To register for Sunday’s event, visit the Europe House website.

Upcoming events

London 2014 rThere’s plenty on in London to get 2014 off to a great start!

20 January 9.30am – 4.10pm  A Conversation about Conflict exploring the faith influences that can be used to tackle difficult issues in a community setting.  St Ethelburga’s and Christian Muslim Forum are co-facilitating the workshop at 305 Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9LH.  Details here.

  • Could your faith community improve the way it responds to conflict?
  • Are you interested in bringing the principles and practices of your faith into your responses to conflict?
  • Are you interested in sharing your faith practices across faiths and learning from each other?

22 January 10am-12pm Together in Service funding briefing at Bethnal Green Mission Church, 305 Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9LH.  There’s also a chance to talk to the TiS team individually about potential projects.  Details here.

22 January 6.30-8pm  Poverty and the Tolerance of the Intolerable – talk by Prof Amartya Sen at LSE . The talk will be live-streamed on LSE’s website and a podcast made available. Details here.

27 January  Holocaust Memorial Day events have been been organised by many London boroughs in cooperation with local religious communities, including Barnet, Lewisham, Haringey, Southwark, Greenwich, Croydon, Brent, Lambeth, Hounslow and Havering.  Details of all London events here.

27 January 5.30pm European Parliament training event with Faiths Forum for London at Europe House, Smith Square, W1.  The aim is to engage with citizens and faith groups to raise awareness of the issues and debates taking place in European Parliament and how citizens can get involved the decision making. Details here.

South London Inter Faith Group meets on the last Thursday of the month at 12.30-2pm at Streatham Friends Meeting House, Roupell Park Estate, Redland Way, SW2 3LU.  Next meeting 30 JanuaryDetails here.

4 February 6pm The Dialogue Society Book Group Meeting 5: A Distant Shore, by Caryl Phillips The Dialogue Society, 402 Holloway Road, N7 6PZ.  Details here.

Westminster Faith Debates are back with a new series, on global religious trends, at RUSI, 61 Whitehall, SW1A 2ET at 5.30pm, including on 12 February What is driving sectarian violence in the wake of the Arab spring? and on 12 March Are attempts to promote worldwide religious freedom naive or necessary?  Details here.

18 February Women in the 21st Century conference at Queen Mary University, London E1 4NS with a wide range of speakers and workshops (£40). Details here.

Westminster Cathedral Interfaith Group meets next to the Cathedral in Victoria on the third Wednesday of the month at 4pm.  Upcoming speakers include Hugo Clarke (Curzon Institute) on World War 1 (19  February), Raheed Salam, faith and interfaith consultant for NCVYS (19 March).  Details here.

11 March 3-5pm  London Boroughs Faiths Network meeting at the Department for Communities and Local Government, Eland House, Bressenden Place, SW1E 5DU.  We are also planning two focused meetings on health and on young Londoners.

Goldsmiths’ Faiths and Civil Society Unit has a series on Faith in the Public Realm, including How do governments do God?  Warwick Hawkins MBE, Head of Faith Communities Engagement, Department for Communities and Local Government
12 March at 5pm.  Near Neighbours – can Christians do public faith for everyone? Dilwar Hussain, New Horizons in British Islam, 14 May at 5pm.  Details here.

15 March  God and Government Conference with Theos, covering welfare, religious freedom, multiculturalism, and education among others.  Details here.

Research Project on Attitudes to Self-Sacrificial Death for National and/or Religious Motives.  Prof John Wolffe (Professor of Religious History, The Open University) is interested to hear from anyone from a Catholic, Protestant or Muslim background who would like to take part in this study by being interviewed.  “In the run-up to the centenaries of the outbreak of the First World War (August 1914), of the Easter Rising in Dublin (April 1916) and of the Battle of the Somme (July 1916), we are developing a historical and contemporary study of British and Irish views on martyrdom and sacrificial death. We are interested not only in perceptions of events a century ago, but also in the way casualties have been regarded in events within living memory such as the Falklands War of 1982, the ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland and IRA attacks in the mainland UK in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. We are also exploring more contemporary examples, notably reactions to the 9/11 and 7/7 bombings, to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to the ‘Arab Spring’.”  Details here.

Promoting social inclusion

faithsforum_logoAn Inter Faith Week invitation from Mustafa Field, Director of the Faiths Forum for London.

“The Faiths Forum for London has organised an interesting workshop to promote inclusion and highlight how social exclusion among children and youth is often not premeditated. The workshop aims to raise awareness and consciousness among practitioners and leaders children and young people can help to make groups more inclusive.

The workshop and discussion will explore the causes of exclusion and inadvertent social exclusion:

  • Why does it often go unnoticed?

  • In what settings does social exclusion most happen?

  • How can we spot the presence of social exclusion?

  • What effect does this kind of exclusion have on the young person and on the community?

It will also explore approaches to promoting inclusion:

  • What methods would be effective in raising greater awareness about the importance of inclusion work?

  • How can we promote inclusion in our youth, education or communal work?

  • How can faith provide the impetus for an inclusion agenda?

The event will take place on Wednesday 20th November at 5.00pm-7.15pm at the Chapel, Westminster Central Hall, Storey’s Gate, London SW1H 9NH.”

If you would like to take part in the discussion, please contact Mustafa on or 020 7569 9098.

Faiths Forum for London – Buncher Conference 31 October

Faiths Forum for London is co-sponsoring the annual two-day international Buncher Conference at Church House, Westminster, SW1P 3NZ, on 31October -1 November.  This year the topic is social finance, corporate social responsibility and communities and speakers include previous FFL director Francis Davis.

“What is the Buncher Conference? The Buncher Interfaith and Intercultural Conference is a multifaith event aiming at bringing together top leaders from different disciplines to discuss critical issues pertaining to the life of their communities. This year, the conference is looking at bringing together faith and cultural leaders, professional and lay with those in business who work with communities. The conference takes place each year in London at the illustrious Church House Conference Centre.

What to expect? This year’s conference will explore the complex interaction between the business and voluntary sectors and will focus on: social finance; corporate social responsibility; businesses utilizing community values and ethics; and the development of partnership models between businesses and communities.

Who is this conference for? The conference is designed to create a bridge between business, finance and communities and will include input from renowned practioners, leading social finance experts from the Oxford business school as well as a variety of other experts. More specifically, the conference is aimed at: senior community professional and leaders; corporate social responsibility as well as diversity and inclusion directors.”

You can register online, where there’s also a video and photos of last year’s conference.

Job opportunity with Faiths Forum for London

faithsforum_logoPhil Rosenberg, who has attended many of our LBFN meetings both before his appointment to Faiths Forum for London and latterly as its Director, is moving on to a senior post at the Board of Deputies of British Jews.  Congratulations Phil!  We will miss him but hope to keep in touch.

FFL is recruiting for a new Director and the deadline is Wednesday 5th June Apologies for posting this so late.  Please circulate to your networks and to anyone who may be interested in applying.  Here is the advertisement:

As you may have heard, our Director Philip Rosenberg has been appointed as Director of Public Affairs at the Board of Deputies of British Jews. He will be tying up some final projects over the next few weeks before moving on at the beginning of July. As such, we are now recruiting for a new Director. The position is a shared role between the FFL and the Fayre Share Foundation.

Please click here for the full job description and person specification, but the main details are below:

Closing Date: Wednesday 5 June
Location: Central London
Salary: £30-35,000 per annum
Contract Type: Full-time for an initial period of 11 months, with the possibility of extension.
Reporting To:
Trustees of the Fayre Share Foundation
Trustees and Council of the Faiths Forum for London
Organisations’ Websites:

Information for Applicants

Please submit a CV and Covering Letter (Max 2 Sides Each) to by Wednesday 5 June 2013 at the latest.

Further statements mourning the death of Drummer Lee Rigby

Leonie Lewis, Co-chair of the Faiths Forum for London and CEO of Jewish Volunteering Network, addressing the meeting on Friday.

Leonie Lewis, Co-chair of Faiths Forum for London and CEO of Jewish Volunteering Network, addressing the meeting on Friday.

The Faiths Forum for London helped organise an event on Friday, drawing together religious leaders, the armed forces and politicians, at which the Deputy Prime Minister spoke.  The two co-chairs of the Forum, Leonie Lewis and Canon Guy Wilkinson CBE, also spoke.

Phil Rosenberg, FFL’s Director, has uploaded a transcript of the speeches onto their website and these may be helpful in local conversations.  They spoke for us all in offering condolences to the family and friends of Drummer Lee Rigby and in condemning his brutal murder.  The speakers were:

  • Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP
  • Sadiq Khan MP
  • Lord Tariq Ahmad
  • Captain Afzal Amin
  • Imam Shams Ad Duha
  • Canon Guy Wilkinson CBE
  • Leonie Lewis

Further statements mourning the death of Drummer Lee Rigby and condemning the attack have been issued by the Mosques and Imams National Advisory Board and the Women’s Interfaith Network.  Others are listed in a previous post.

Faiths Forum for London looking for Senior Project Officer

Faiths Forum for London has asked for an advertisement for their new post to be publicised widely.  Please circulate a link to this page or download the FFL Advertisement and the FFL Job Description  and send them to your own networks and to anyone you think may be interested.  The deadline for applications is noon on 11th July.

Over the years, LBFN has supported the development of a London faith forum and has welcomed news and the occasional speaker from FFL at our meetings.

More information is available from the Forum.

Invitation to Summit

LBFN members are all invited to the Faiths Forum for London and Mayor’s Inter Faith Initiative’s Summit on Tuesday 8th February at King’s College (Strand Campus – near the north end of Waterloo Bridge).  We are invited to a Breakfast Reception with a keynote speaker at 8.15am – 9.45am and the day proper will run from 10am to 5pm, concluding with an evening reception.

A special event comprising world class speakers, innovative organisations, and fresh approaches to communities, collaboration and cohesion.

A day when leaders, activists and innovators from the civic, private and public sector will meet to drive and debate the future of social change.

If you would like to attend, please contact Nora Nogradi at Faiths Forum for London and you will be sent a formal invitation.

Please pass this invitation to the Summit The Mayor of London Invites to any who may be interested and to those who may have further names to suggest for invitations.

This promises to be a good opportunity to find out more about FFL’s plans for the future and to learn more about the Mayor’s Inter Faith Initiative – see you there!