Freedom from the clutches of Empire: Face to Face with Migration and Human Trafficking.

Face to Face with Migration and Human Trafficking is one of the contexts for the Face to Face programme.  The programme seeks to challenge participants to engage with the realities of how the fullness of life is being denied to a large majority of the world’s population, through the lens of migration and human trafficking.  The programme exposes participants to a context other than their own to stimulate theological reflection, encourage sensitivity to people of other cultures and motivate people to engage in mission. Such exposure might be used to:

  • – Enlarge the horizons of theological understanding of the participant
  • – Experience contextual realities of different communities
  • – Equip someone for multicultural ministry
  • – Explore mission in the context of Empire

At the beginning of June, 2017, 9 participants from around the world arrived in the UK to commence the 6 week Face to Face programme. The participants came from India, Jamaica, Kiribati, Madagascar, Philippines, South Africa, South Korea and Zambia.

During the 6 week period, they had two placement periods whereby they worked alongside churches and voluntary organisations that support and care for migrants and people who may experience trafficking.  They were given placements all across the UK in Blackburn, Cardiff, Colchester, Darwen, Newcastle, Penrhys, Pontypridd,  Sheffield and Southend.

For many of the participants, this was a first time experience working with refugees and victims of human trafficking. Through daily journals and a final presentation, participants were given the ability to reflect on their experiences and how it influenced their theological reflections. This was an important aspect of the programme as it gave CWM facilitators a chance to understand how the participants engaged with the individuals and tasks they faced on their placements.

Overall, at the end of the 6 weeks, many participants felt that the Face to Face programme had not only challenged their views on the world and empire, but also made life changing affects on their personal lives.