The Pagan Federation Community Support Team Story
The Community Support Teams began with the Disabilities Team in 2015 as a way of helping Pagans with disabilities to access the Pagan community and support them in the practise of their faith as an additional service to that offered by the district teams. All the team members are disabled in one way or another, helping them to understand the needs of those within the community and so enabling them to help others out there facing similar challenges.
Over the years, it became clear that there were other groups within the community that needed similar assistance. This led to the birth of the Children and Families Team, the LGBTQIA+ Team and of special branches serving Interfaith work and hospital visiting.
Thanks to feedback from our community in the last two years, we have re-established our Youth and Education team and started a new team that will focus on Cultural Cohesion within the Pagan community.
In 2022, we have made some more changes to our teams and added a new team to their ranks. The changes are to two of our teams. The Disabilities Team becomes the Accessibility Team, and the Cultural Cohesion Team becomes the Cultural Diversity Team. These changes allow us to be not only more inclusive from the inside out, but also to better serve our community and their needs.
We’re introducing our new team to focus on cohesion, understanding and collaboration between different branches of Paganisms. Say hello to our new Intrafaith Team!
Aa always, all members of the teams have direct experience or training in their area of speciality and are there to help support the main district teams in their work of supporting and serving the community as a whole.
As a whole team, we developed The Seven Threads of Wellness. Its a guiding document that helps us to choose worthwhile work for supporting our members and the wider community. Weaving these seven threads together makes for a tapestry of strong, efficient community care that we can lay upon the floor to create an accessible, inclusive and durable path for all to travel.
While not all of these threads appear to be the sorts of things that a faith organisation should focus on, we believe that there are spiritual aspects to all facets of our lives and that finding those can be of comfort and a great help to those searching for such comfort and strength in today’s troubled times.
Thread One – Intellectual Wellness
Intellectual wellness is being open to new ideas, thinking critically, and seeking out new challenges. It is being creative, curious, and engaging in ongoing learning.
Thread Two – Emotional Wellness
Emotional wellness is being aware of and able to navigate a wide range of emotions in a constructive, supportive way and having the tools and resources to navigate life’s ups and downs.
Thread Three – Physical Wellness
Physical Wellness is caring for your body to allow for optimal health and functioning, including making intentional choices with respect to alcohol and other drug use, nutrition, illness prevention, physical activity and movement, sexual health, sleep, stress management, medical or surgical intervention and safety.
Thread Four -Social Wellness
Social Wellness includes enjoying strong personal connections with others, managing interpersonal conflict effectively and connecting with your community and the people around you whilst maintaining your own sense of personal identity and being mindful of your safety.
Thread Five – Spiritual Wellness
Spiritual Wellness is making meaning of life events, having and understanding your purpose and being compassionate towards yourself and others.
Thread Six – Environmental Wellness
Environmental Wellness is characterised by being aware of the interactions between the environment, community and ourselves. This dimension recognises the impact your environment (home, shopping centre, local park, public transport, etc.) has on you as well as the impact you have on your environment.
Thread Seven – Financial Wellness
Financial Wellness is developing skills for managing resources as well as an understanding of the process of sustaining ourselves financially for the short- and long-term.
Our remit as an integral part of the Pagan Federation, is to serve, promote and support the Pagan Community as a whole and because of this we have no doubt we will discover further need down the road a little. Indeed, we would like you to contact us if you know of any group not being helped!