Robsky’s Occasional Log.
Kyle and the Bull
I have tasked myself with creating a Providence archive, in readiness both for a book to write, and to produce an accessible record of the story of Providence, which is also the story of many people. I have been allocated a cupboard. That’s all! At least it’s a walk-in cupboard.
One Friday this photo fell out as I was sorting. A picture of Kyle and the bull. I think young Kyle felt very brave when he stood by this huge creature, nonchalantly chewing grass. Kyle has got big and fit himself since that photo was taken. He now runs a very successful personal trainer business, helping some quite well known people keep fit. He is also youth pastor at Potter’s House in Clapham Junction, seeking to signpost young people to become spiritually fit. As his mother says he has come a long way since then.
Michail and the Goals
I was sent this photograph by a former Providence House football coach. Second from the right in the front row is Michail Antonio, who as a lad played football with us. On the day I received the picture, Michail banged in four goals for West Ham United against Norwich City, sealing the latter’s relegation fate from the Premiership. The next weekend, he played against Manchester United. He also has come a long way since the photograph.
Travelling Together with East Shallowford
I had a phone call from Paul. Like the two above he also was regular at Providence House, but unlike them he is in his late fifties. He rang to ask whether we had ever taken him to Wales as a boy. Although Providence used to take camping trips to Wales it was in the sixties, before either he or I were involved. What we did do, however, is take trips to Devon, to East Shallowford Farm, since the mid seventies. What we still do is organise residentials to East Shallowford. In late July a group of Providence-connected families will be the first group to visit again after Covid-19. Following that we will arrange two youth groups in August, and then start again in September with a couple of adult groups. It is a long time since we first went to Shallowford in 1976, and we are still travelling together.
The Local Connections
While Covid-19 has kept us apart, it has also brought us together. Our networks with other local groups have perhaps never been richer. As a youth organisation we have jointly set up youth-battersea.co.uk, and partnered in radio shows, in events, joint funding bids and partner working. As a community organisation we have worked with Big Local SW11 on a Covid-19 support fund, and worked alongside BL Alliance to recruit two new youth and community posts in Battersea.
For me personally I have worked almost every week driving a refrigerated van with Waste not Want not Battersea and we have been out and about engaging with such a broad variety of local people.
It has been good to connect, but there is still a long way to go.
Time to connect
I was asked this week by a stranger what was my key motivation. I said without hesitation. People. Connecting with people. It is all about making connections. Making connections with yourself. Making connections with each other. Don’t forget that most important of connections – connection with God. Connecting through faith in Christ. That is why we are here – to connect.
So keep in touch.
Give us a call on 020 7228 0433 or 07894 714153.
Send us a message: https://providence-house.org/contact-us/
Make a donation: https://cafdonate.cafonline.org/4100#!/DonationDetails
Above all keep the connections.
Robert Musgrave MBE