By Ricky McAddock

The month of December is unique in many ways.

As the last month on the annual calendar, it naturally prompts us to reflect over the year just gone. It is also the beginning of the colder winter months, leading up to Winter Solstice on the 21st December, the shortest day of the year. This month also contains the season of advent which is the beginning of the Christian calendar. The advent season is a time of waiting, where we prepare our hearts once again to celebrate both the first coming of the messiah, in remembering His birth, and also the ongoing waiting and expectation of His second coming, where He will come again in all His glory.  After celebrating Christmas hope and expectancy increases as we prepare to celebrate and begin thinking about the new year ahead. 

2022 reflections/celebrations  

Let’s begin by looking back first & celebrating the goodness of God.  Below are some of the key highlights and challenges we faced across 2022: 

Let’s begin with impact, the reason Street Connect exists, which is to see lives transformed and people reached. This year saw more people going into rehab than we have ever seen, more people engaging in community recovery via our recovery groups and 1-2-1 support, and saw us beginning to rebuild our outreach initiatives to enable us to reach and support more people. Read some of the testimonies here: Testimonies | Street Connect 

Streamlining was a key word for us coming into 2022. We knew we had to streamline the team, particularly in the area of fundraising. A lot of this was taken out of our hands as God begun the ‘pruning process’, which did leave us with fundraising capacity challenges across the year and recently led to a new Fundraising & Marketing Manager as Anne Walker recently stepped into the role. I want to thank every member of the fundraising team, past and present, for the vital work they have undertook to advance our mission and particularly celebrate many of the significant multi-year grants we have received and the kind donations of many generous donors who make our work possible. 

We sadly lost a couple of key frontline staff members in the second half of the year, but have been able to slowly re-build the team in a challenging recruiting environment. 

To build a solid foundation for the future God has in store for us, we have made a number of significant advancements in the area of technology and implementing our digital strategy.  A number of key major developments include the move to a new system for our frontline services, the development of an e-learning training platform and related resources for all frontline workforce including church partners and the recently developed new website, which you can check out here if you haven’t seen it yet! Home | Street Connect 

During the summer I had my first ever sabbatical! Over the 8 week period, one of the key learnings was around the pace of developments within the organisation. This was perfect preparation for the beginning of a season of looking forward, as we begun a strategy review for the next 3 year period. 

2023 – Strategy Review 

During the review we identified a number of key words/phrases which would underpin the new strategy, including ‘pace’ ‘quality’ ‘streamlined focus’ ‘no new major developments beyond what is already scheduled’ ‘soul care’ and ‘being highly intentional in saying no to new opportunities’. We plan to share the updated strategy early next year, ready for launch in April 2023. Watch this space!

Some of the key aims for the next 3 years are: 

  • Opening 30 new church partnerships across the UK as we move from regional to national 
  • Improved partnership working across all sectors 
  • Soul care of our workforce.  
  • Building a long term sustainable financial foundation 
  • Getting the most from the technology developments of the past 3 years to improve the overall quality of our services and every aspect of the organisation 

Thank you for partnering with us and we pray you have a blessed Christmas and look forward to all 2023 has in store. 

Dec 13, 2022