Top Church Training was first registered as a charity in March 1997.
Young people were literally knocking on the door of the vicarage at Top Church in Dudley for help and support. Their needs were too complex for the then Vicar and so, along with his Parish Council, he set up a stand-alone project which could provide one-to-one support to those most in need.
Even though the project was born out of Christian church community, we aren't a religious group and are open to all denominations & beliefs.
We move to the DCC Centre in Salop Street Dudley. The facilities here enabled to begin building and extending our facilities to include a working cafe and sports clubs
The Café project has become so successful that we were able to take it into proper restaurant premises.
After many months of hard work raising funding and refurbishing premises, Harry's Café opened just across the street from our offices in Brierley Hill.
The goal is to build a self-funding training ground for beneficiaries. Our Allotment Project provides much of the vegetable produce towards the menu and as a side-benefit, we will be able to provide healthy meals for those of our beneficiaries who really need them.
The two projects working in tandem also provides opportunity for beneficiaries to gain some understanding of a supply chain.
Our café project has often supported the most vulnerable of our beneficiaries, ensuring they had had at least some healthy balanced meals in their diet.
With the onset of the COVID lockdown we realised the importance of this service and redirected some of our resources towards providing front line help for as many of those in need as was possible.
The number of meals distributed rocketed and during lockdown, the free meal service grew into a project of it's own - now affectionately know as Harry's Larder Project.
Establishing this project next helped us provide for schoolchildren, who lost access to school dinners during the holidays following a new Government ruling.
By driving this project forward with a view to it becoming a permanent service, we aimed to ensure that we can help many more people who, because of adverse circumstances, aren't able to provide for themselves.