On the anniversary of her appointment to ECCR, our Executive Director, Janie Oliver, reflects on the year just past. 

So, I’ve had the privilege now of leading ECCR for the past year. And what a challenging year it’s been! Most of 2019 was dominated by Brexit uncertainty and of course, 2020 hasn’t turned out the way we were expecting it to.

Despite that, and perhaps because of it, I remain convinced that what we’re trying to achieve as an organisation is even more important. Our vision is for a fairer and more sustainable world and if the past few weeks have taught us anything, it’s that we can’t afford to go back to “normal” when this is all over. Normal meant an underfunded health care system, ever growing poverty and economic disparity between rich and poor. Normal meant large multinationals dodging tax – in many cases the same companies who are now looking to the UK taxpayer for a bailout. Normal meant communities divided and loneliness on the rise. Normal meant a planet on the edge of a catastrophic collapse.

Instead, we need a new normal. A normal where we have taken the lessons learnt over the past few weeks when so many demonstrated what it means to be truly human. When communities pulled together and volunteer armies mobilised across the country to support those who needed it most. When families came together, and businesses found new ways of working and connecting that didn’t involve highly-pollutant travel. When people stopped thinking only of self and asked “How can I make a difference”?

At ECCR, we believe that as Christians, we are called to ask this question every day. How can I make a difference with the resources God has blessed me with? How can I use everything I have to bring about His kingdom on earth? What can I do to contribute to positive social, environmental and economic change?

We launched Money Makes Change in January this year as a response to these questions. Why don’t you use this time to find out more and partner with us as we seek justice, love kindness and walk humbly in every area of our lives, including how we use money.


  • J.Kok
    21 Apr 2020

    Well written and thought provoking … if we’ve learned anything from the past year it’s that we need a new normal! Thank you

  • Michael Doe
    28 Apr 2020

    Next week, Friday May 8th, is VE Day, and this year the 75th Anniversary of the end of the War in Europe. Many people have likened the Corvid19 epidemic to the Great Depression of the 1920s or the Economic Crisis of 2008. Certainly we will again face the need to rebuild our economy. And I wonder whether, again, it will be the poorest people who will pay the largest cost. But it could also be, as happened in the years that followed VE and then VJ Day, an opportunity to ask what kind of society, and therefore what kind of economy, we want to build. As in the War years, we are suffering together, and owe so much to those on the frontline, many of whom are risking their own lives for others. In the post-War period that led to major advances in health care, educational opportunity, affordable housing, and social equality. Will we come out of this current crisis ready to embrace such opportunity, or simply return to the old, sad “normality”?

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