Bristol Christian Action Network
"helping Christians respond to social needs"

BCAN Forums

The BCAN Forums are a way of bringing like-minded people & groups who work in similar and related fields together to encourage, inform and spur each other on. They are also places to share ideas and good practice as well as to network.


Pastoral Care Forum

The Pastoral Care Forum was established in 2004 to provide high-quality training for churches in pastoral care. Our research showed that churches are often under-resourced and ill-equipped to offer the sort of pastoral support members of their congregations and communities seek from them. We organise regular workshops that explore topics relating to mental wellbeing and spirituality.

In 2008, Wholeminds was launched under the auspices of Hope's Place. This initiative works across the South West of England to:

  • provide education to the general public and the church that promotes mental health
  • equip local churches to engage with and respond to the mental health-related needs of their congregations and communities
  • empower isolated individuals experiencing mental health problems to engage with their communities

More information on our work, upcoming events and how to get involved is available at www.wholeminds.org.uk or email carolinevirgo@hopesplace.org.uk


Homelessness Forum

The BCAN Homeless Forum meets every two months, on the Thursday following the training, between 7:30 and 9:30 pm. Up to the end of 2003, most of the meetings were held at City Road Baptist Church, but since then we have been moving around.

We support our member groups in three main ways: through meetings, training and publications,

  • The meetings provide an opportunity to share information and concerns, ask questions, explore issues, and develop joint policies and guidelines. They are also an opportunity for related organisations (like the Council or other charities) to be invited to attend and describe their activities and priorities to us.
  • The training is aimed at the staff and volunteers of our member groups, but is open to anyone who would benefit from it. At present, we cover a series of ten topics over the course of a year. Networking is a key aspect of both the BHF meetings and the training sessions.
  • The publications reflect input to the meetings, and also internal documents groups have offered to share to help others. At present, these publications are offered free of charge.

For more information please go to the BCAN Homelessness Forum Minisite.