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LOAF PROJECT is a registered charity (no: 293855)

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The first year’s project in 1979 raised £4,300 to purchase a Landrover ambulance for the Nuba Mountains in Sudan and provide the money to run it for a year! In todays terms the sum donated would need to be multiplied many times.

Over the next fifteen years or so LOAF Projects provided help from the churches, and increasingly the wider community of the Hastings area - such as schools, firms and clubs - to schemes as diverse as:

· a new engine for a relief plane in Tanzania,

· running a clinic in a Cambodian refugee camp for a year,

· planting 10,000 trees in Ethiopia,

· setting up a camel breeding programme in Kenya,

· a jeep and a generator to ex-Hastings Health visitor June Nash working in Papua

· building and equipping a laboratory in Rwanda

· installing water supply to 3 Ethopian towns (at today’s equivalent cost of £40k)

After a few years of “ticking along” LOAF Project was resurrected in 1997.

1998/9 project: The building of a children’s hostel in Romania (which groups of local teenagers and craftsmen travelled out to help construct)

The Millennium project in 2000 raised £32,000 to build a 6 classroom primary school at Cyangugu in Rwanda

The 2001/2 project raised over £35,000 to rebuild bridges and other infrastructure in Hastings Sierra Leone; it also built a bridge between the African and English cultures and communities of the two towns bearing the same name which will go on into the future

The 2002/3 project, Project Sarah seeks to raised £27,500 to help deprived children in one of India’s poorest areas. This bought a building to house a day care centre and also built the main structures for an entire children’s development unit eventually caring for 300 orphans or destitute children, teaching them practical skills such as tailoring and agriculture, and giving them the opportunity for a fulfilled life that would almost certainly otherwise be denied to them.

The 2004/5 project Project Esperanza (Spanish for Hope) raised £30,000 - £10,000 each for a Catholic project for street children in Colombia (medical and dental facilities added onto a safe house), an Anglican project in Lima, Peru to provide a maternal and child welfare clinic in a slum district and a Pentecostal programme in Bolivia to build class rooms and a feeding centre for 100 deprived children.

2006/7 Loaf returned to Hastings Sierra Leone to build an Community Resource Centre, which combines admin, banking and post-office facilities, an IT training area, and space for groups to meet.

Through this came the Hastings Sierra Leone Friendship Link and the two Hastings have become officially twinned.

LOAF has raised over £500,000 over the years. There have been three main ways: One is by organising events church groups and other community groups and individuals can partake in together - such as the annual LOAF May Day walk, a feature of life in the town since the very first May Day Holiday was declared. The other is by churches, schools and clubs holding their own events (coffee mornings, concerts, special collections etc.) and by working individually contribute to a common cause. GRAPEVINE magazine, produced by LOAF Project as a service to church unity in the area, will give free publicity to any such events.

We cannot totally change the world - but by working together, the people of Hastings and area can do things which bring substantial benefit to some of the world’s poorest people and also act as a visible declaration of Christ’s love to those in the town who are not members of the church.