Southwark Multi Faith Forum

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Peckham Interfaith Visits & Walk Sat 5th Jan 11am - 3.30pm
We are pleased to publicise a locally arranged inter-faith walk in Peckham on Saturday 5th January between 11am and 3.30pm, visiting several faith places:

11.00am Copleston Centre Church
12.15pm Choumert Grove Mosque
1.45pm Rye Lane Baptist Chapel
2.45pm Baha'i Faith members hosting the end of the walk at the Peckham Pulse

See the map in the poster at Join in at any point on the way. There will be an introduction at each place with Q&As, and the overall theme is Peace. If you bring some food, please bring vegetarian.

Meet some of your other-faith neighbours. Open to all faiths or none. Learn about religious beliefs and traditions.

If you'd like to know more about other faiths, or inter faith work, or our multi faith society, or visit interesting Peckham buildings or any combination of those, do join us on this gentle walk and visits around central Peckham. It is an enjoyable and interesting way for us all to learn more about each other as neighbours.

26  December  2012

SMFF all change - now run by volunteers
SMFF was founded in 2003 and coordinated by Southwark Council until 2009. The current website shows the work during that time. SMFF is now coordinated by volunteers developing new ways of working to help connect the good work that is happening all over the borough.

Anyone keen on inter-faith or multi-faith activities are welcome to join with us. What you can do:

• Join the SMFF mailing list to receive the new SMFF News Emails with information about inter-faith & multi-faith initiatives.
• Encourage others you know to join the mailing list.
• Let us know what your own interests are and how you can help to spread the word about SMFF.
• If you have any time to help us in the development work, contact us to find out more.

We cannot access all parts of the website yet so not all details will be up to date.

15 December 2010

Contact email:

1  January  2011

I'ts AGM time again - Time to have a say!
We are pleased to invite you to the AGM of Southwark Multi Faith Forum on 24th November 2009.

This year the event takes place at “ The Rotherhithe Hilton - The London Room, Hilton Docklands Riverside, 265 Rotherhithe Street,
London SE16 5HW. That's Tuesday 24th November 2009 at 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm.
All documentation will be accessible via our website. You should be able to obtain our accounts, membership form, notice to the agm, and our annual report. Should you have any problems - contact Charlotte Beaumont on 020 7525 5502.
24  November  2009

Training Courses for Faith, Voluntary and Community Groups
Purpose Consultancy are hosting a number of training events for groups from April to June.Delegate places are allocated on a ‘first come – first served basis’. Owing to the huge demand on these courses, it is advisable to book early so as to avoid disappointment.For more details visit our downloads section on training...
17  March  2008

SMFF live on BBC London Radio
The Chair of SMFF Rev. David Wade will be speaking about the work of the Multi faith forum on radio. To hear the latest news of what SMFF is doing in Southwark and to find out more about how you can be a part of this success tune in to BBC London Radio this Sunday the 9th of March 2008 at 7am.
6  March  2008

From the Manager's Desk
Thank You

Dear friends and supporters of SMFF. I just wanted to say a big thank you to all those who have supported and enabled in one way or the other the hugely successful year of the SMFF.

SMFF started in 2003 with an inaugural meeting held at the Damilola Taylor centre in Peckham where a management committee was elected. The management committee consisted of 4 Christian representatives, 3 Muslim representatives, and 1 from each of the following faiths;

• Bahai
• Judaism
• Hindu
• Buddhist

We subsequently added a Rastafarian representative who was unable to continue so stood down at our last AGM, and due to moving away we also no longer have a Jewish representative. We seek to replace these over the coming months.

The management committee met regularly to discuss faith issues across the borough centred on social and community issues and not matters of individual faith idiosyncrasies. Whilst some good work was done using this method with the aid of Joe Ahmed-Dobson the first coordinator of the project and subsequently with Trevor Udennis the current coordinator who I met in position when I took over management of the forum in 2006, some concerns were levied at how widely matters of faith were disseminated to the vast faith community in Southwark.

Change Management
Since assuming the management role of the multi-faith forum over the last 20 months we have embarked on an ambitious program of change and wider engagement of the faith communities residing locally.

Southwark currently boasts approximately 80% of its population as being persons of faith. With a current residency of around 260,000 persons, the SMFF have a huge task of trying to appeal to over 200,000 persons in the borough but have chosen to use a cascading model where intense work has been undertaken with the leaders of the various faith groups in the borough who in turn relay information to their own faith groups.

One of the challenges I encountered when taking management responsibility for the forum was the issue of appealing to the wider faith community other than those represented on the management committee. Whilst some good partnership work was ongoing with other voluntary sector providers, many of Southwark’s faith communities were not involved in the work of the forum. In response to this the now hugely successful ‘Open Forum’ meetings were initiated appealing to all people of faith across the borough as well as those of no faith and dealt with subjects such as;

• Teenage Pregnancy
• Mental Health
• Fire Safety
• Planning and enforcement regulations
• Smacking – discipline or abuse
• Preventing Violent Extremism
• Safeguarding Children

This was further supplemented by the forum organising and delivering their own regular training events and providing 1-2-1 advice and capacity building.

November 2006 also saw SMFF hold its AGM at Rotherhithe Hilton followed recently by its largest meeting of recent times to date when the latest AGM held in the same location saw a record number of over 160 people in attendance.

SMFF have worked extensively over the last year to engage with all faiths in Southwark, involving our diverse communities in discussions, projects, and training on difficult and potentially divisive topics. With the help of agencies such as the Police, South London and Maudsley Trust, Children’s Services, Marie Stopes Centre, Community Safety Unit, Volunteer Centre Southwark, Southwark Action for Voluntary Services, Southwark Community Care Forum, Southwark Muslim Forum and more besides.

Particular pieces of work centred on Teenage Pregnancy have received London-wide acclaim and the project focussed on preventing violent extremism has been deemed so successful further funding is being given to develop the good work. SMFF are seeking to cement this good practice over the coming year and to ensure recognition is given for the innovative ways in which they have bought communities together to discuss matters of local and national importance.

Substantial outreach work has taken place in this time to raise the membership from little more than 10-15 member organisations to over 150 and growing. This work has included writing reports, visiting groups, telephone conversations, publicity management, stakeholder and membership management, project planning boards and so much more. Our meetings this year attracted approx 1000 people to our various events across the borough. This is where I must say thanks to the following people who were part of the team and have worked over and beyond their paid roles to ensure SMFF delivered quality events;

Trevor Udennis- SMFF Coordinator
Anwara Ali - SMFF Project Support Officer
Hazel Marwa - SMFF Project Officer

Once again a big thank you to all those that worked extensively on SMFF projects over the last year; to the management committee who gave us ratification and steer, to Nuala Conlan, Service Manager for CIDU who allowed the forum latitude to pursue often controversial subjects, to senior council staff and members who supported our events, and to our Chief Executive Annie Sheppard, who came to our peace breakfast 2006 as one of her first public engagements embarked on at Southwark.

Mostly I want to say Thank You to the leaders and members of the various faith groups of Southwark for all your help, support and guidance. You make our jobs worthwhile.


Paul Bruce
Community Involvement Manager

Tel No: 020 7525 5535
Mob: 07944 754 826

28  February  2008

The Southwark MultiFaith Forum (SMFF), “The definitive voice of the Faith Sector in Southwark” held its 4th Annual General Meeting (AGM) for the period 2006-2007.

This meeting, was held at the prestigious, “Rotherhithe Hilton” and was both an AGM and an Anniversary Conference to celebrate the work of the SMFF. The event turned out to be a rip roaring success. There was over 150 people in attendance including, “The Worshipful the Mayor, Cllr Bob Skelly” and Cllr Columba Blango the Executive member for Citizenship, Equalities and Communities.

Speaking after the event Cllr Blango said, “I think the AGM was a fantastic event, and it is good to know that 80% of the residents of Southwark are from a faith background. The event was important in encouraging the faith community to come together and it represents a good example of an event promoting community cohesion in our Borough. It is good for the Borough’s citizens to come together in the way we did last night, and SMFF should be considered a flagship of community relationship. We hope that SMFF will continue to get stronger and have a place of their own to work and cooperate with the Council in order to increase cohesiveness and religious tolerance within Southwark.”

Rev. David Wade (the returned Chair of SMFF) was complementary of his team when he said, "The SMFF Cidu team did a fantastic job in reaching out to so many new attendees over the last year, the outreach work has yielded great dividends and the team is to be commended for their Stirling efforts"

The event was held at: Hilton Hotel – 265 Rotherhithe Street, London SE16 5HW. 19th February from 6.30 pm – 9.30 pm. Free Refreshments and food were available towards the end.

20  February  2008

Sex, Relationships Education& Child Protection for Faith Groups
Saturday the 23th of February is yet another day for training specifically targeted to faith groups. Do not miss this opportunity to be informed on how to protect and support your young people.The course will cover Sex, Relationships Education and Child Protection. To book simply download the course outline from our documents section or call us on 0207 525 5444.....
23  February  2008

FAITH AREA NETWORKS (Feedback Meeting)
Date&Time 21 January 6-8pm
Venue St James’church, Thurland Road (off Jamaica Road) London SE16 5AA

Following the Faith Area Network (FAN) event that was held in Rotherhithe and Bermondsey (Oct 2007), faith groups and organizations in this area requested for a feedback meeting. In a nutshell the following was highlighted during the discussions
- The need to have regular FAN meetings .
- The need to deal with issues concerning youth, anti-social behaviour, parenting, planning , poverty, fundraising , capacity building and community cohesion just to name a few
- More networking and information sharing between faith groups, council departments and local organizations

The feedback meeting is for participants to come and decide on how they want their FAN to be governed and will have the opportunity to decide what they want from the network in relation to the issues above and more.

If you are a faith group, organization or and individual that lives in Rotherhithe or Bermondsey we would be happy to see you attend this event

31  December  2007

In June Southwark MultiFaith forum held its first Open forum meeting called,"Faith Against Violence" at the Southwark Town hall from 6.00 pm to 9.00 pm where Faith Groups across Southwark came together to tackle the issue of - Domestic violence, Guns and knife crime and violent extremism. We were also consulted by Wastemanagement, the Fire Brigade and the planning department. It was a dynamic evening where over 100 people from faith backgrounds turned out for a discussion that heated up but never boiled over. In fact it was so good that we had to make a decision to move the next discussion to Cator Street. Incidentally the details for the next Open Forum can be found below.

* 9th August 07
* 6th October 07
* 6th December 07
* 7th February 08

We look forward to your participation and trust that these forums can make a difference.
26  January  2008

As we approach the end of our financial year Southwark Multi-Faith Forum is hosting yet another event to celebrate its work. The forum believes that by working together on practical community activities,we can achieve more for the people of Southwark than can be done acting alone. The main agenda for the evening is the election of a new Management Committee followed by lots of fun and entertainment to celebrate the work of all faith groups.For more details about this event please visit our 'whats on section'. You can also download any forms from our downloads section. We look forward to seeing you there...
19  February  2008

Some of our member groups will be aware that SMFF and Volunteer Centre Southwark have been running a joint programme of Capacity building which includes (Project Start up, Funding, Finance management, Monitoring & evaluation, Project Management and Strategic Planning). While we were running two courses on each unit in order to be inclusive, we had decided that the turn out does not warrant two courses and will therefore be running one mid-week course on each unit.

The remainder of the dates are as follows: All participants need to contact Volunteer Centre Southwark on: 0207 403 2936 or

Monitoring & Evaluation 28.09.06 @ Inspire
Time 09.30 hrs -16.30

Strategic Planning 19.10.06 @ Inspire
Time 09.30 hrs -16.30

Project Management 23.11.06 @ Inspire
Time 09.30 hrs -16.30

31  August  2006

25th April - Partnership Training run jointly with Southwark Art Forum. Anyone interested ring -0207 252 8672. Places are limited.

26th April - We are having a Faith in Regeneration seminar. Unfortunately this is an invitation only event, however we will be letting everyone know what happened and how the day went.

8th May 06 - How to do a good Fundraising application part 2. This is a not to be missed event.
21  April  2006

SMFF is pleased to announce it's training dates for yet another exciting year in Capacity Building for faith groups.

SMFF puts on training of various kinds (see the list below) the faith community encourage us to continue to do this so we in turn encourage you to attend. To book simply contact us by email or telephone - 020 7525 5444. Our next training dates and topics are as follows

26th Jan 08

23 Feb 08

FAITH GROUPS – Sat 22nd Mar 08

For a copy of the training programme in detail, go to the documents section of this website and look for training - SOUTHWARK MULTIFAITH TRAINING PROGRAMME 2008.
31  December  2007

The Peace Breakfast is a part of a festival celebrating diversity and promoting justice, equality and respect through activities across the Boroughs in London.
Following its success last year, the London Week of Peace, is planned for the 10th to the 17th of September 2006. The week will profile and promote community safety and peace initiatives, offering Londoners the opportunity to participate and dialogue in a range of issues, whilst being able to contribute to a more cohesive society.
The London Week of Peace has continually been endorsed by the Prime Minister, Home Secretaries, Metropolitan Police Commanders and various leading political figures. It is facilitated by the strategic group involving representatives from the Greater London Authority, Government Office for London , the Home Office, the Metropolitan Police Authority, Crimestoppers, London Fire Brigade, The Peace Alliance and other strategic interest groups.
The former Home Secretary, Hon Charles Clarke said, "I am delighted to offer my support for the London Week of Peace 2006, one of the most important elements in tackling crime and disorder is for us all to work together. The opportunity that the London Week of Peace affords for people from across the capital to come together to enjoy the wealth of activities on offer, to celebrate the diversity of our communities, discuss issues, and take part in events in a true spirit of cooperation and respect, is of immense value.
Southwark Multi Faith Forums' Peace Breakfast 2006, in observance of Peace Week, will be on Monday September 11th 2006. This event is supported by Southwark Alliance, and takes place this year at the beautiful Glaziers Hall at London Bridge from 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Given the events of recent times, the observance of Peace Week has taken on increased significance. We at Southwark would like to do our part to recognise the coming together of the different sectors of our community who work together to keep peace at the forefront. We will discuss how faith communities working with the wider community/statutory and voluntary agencies can bring about lasting peace. This event will also serve to commemorate the 5th anniversary of 9/11.
Expected at this year's event are representatives from the Metropolitan Police, community safety, voluntary services and the various religious groups found in Southwark. We invite to you to come meet with some of the contributors to a safer and peace filled Southwark, and to take the opportunity to network whilst we enjoy breakfast.

31  August  2006

How to Empower through Faith Projects
On Saturday 18th Feburary, over 25 people turned up representing varying Faith Groups to attend our seminar-workshop on How to Empower through Faith Projects. It was a thoroughly light hearted and yet powerful time of impartation and learning.

Most people commended us on the quality of the training and targeting a very real need. The day had the feel of a reunion of friends as the network time was eagerly entered into with a social passion for contact that was refreshing to see.

The feedback about the day was that it was well appreciated and that we need to do more of this kind of thing. Oh! Did I mention that the food had a five star praise from everyone. There was nothing to take home when everyone had finished.

We would like to say a heart felt thanks to our trainers for the day Sonya Brown (Faith in Regenreation) and Natalia Sali (SCCF).
18  February  2006

A Joint Statement by The Southwark Multi Faith Forum
As people of different faiths in the London Borough of Southwark, we are appalled by the attacks on ordinary people in our city today. The teachings of all our faiths unambiguously condemn violence of this kind. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families, and with the members of the emergency services who have responded with such care and dedication. At this unsettled time, we affirm our commitment to one another as fellow citizens seeking peace and justice for our city and our world.

Southwark Multi Faith Forum

Reverend David Martin Wade, SMFF Chair - Christian Borough Dean
Professor Dawud Noibi OBE - Southwark Muslim Forum
Trevor Precious - Engaged Buddhist
The Venerable Dr Michael Ipgrave - Christian Borough Dean
Mrs Bola Okuboyejo - Southwark Muslim Forum
Captain Catherine Smith - Christian Borough Dean
Shane O’Brien - Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Southwark
Jane O’Brien - Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Southwark
Marianne Caitane - Nichiren Daishonin Buddhist
Rabbi James Baaden - South London Liberal Synagogue
Reverend Gareth Wilde - Christian Borough Dean
Mr & Mrs Sattee - Southwark Hindu Council

7  July  2005

The Reason for the Season
Margaritta O’Donnell, Camberwell community Involvement coordinator partnered with Southwark Multifaith Forum to put on a MultiFaith event in December which was aimed at bringing people together of differing faiths and cultures as well as being as inclusive as possible.

The event was well received by the communit and was quite successful for the 2nd year running.

There were things for Young People such as – Ice skating, bouncy castle, and speakers such as Prof. Noibi from SMFF.

The event spoke to the message of Christmas and what that time of the year means to different cultures.

The attendance was between 300-350. The downside was that some groups and invited faith leaders weren't able to make it; also SELF (South East London Foundation) turned down a £1000.00 application for this Multifaith event because SMFF had more funds in their accounts than the funding limit allows.

The total spend for the event was 4K SMFF has funded the event for £1K there are pictures of the event if anyone wants to see them in the picture gallery.
22  December  2005

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