About The Olive Branch
“…to heal the brokenhearted, and announce freedom for prisoners and captives…”
Isaiah 61 vs 1-4
We began as a voluntary group in 2004 and started by serving free meals to the homeless. In 2008 we recognised the need for a more structured support program and founded our open-access centre in Lancaster. The Olive Branch is funded by grants and donations from charitable trusts, local churches, individuals and a small grant from Lancashire County Council. We are managed by 6 voluntary trustees that meet formally each month.
The centre is currently open four days a week: Mon, Wed, Thurs, Fri from 11 am-1 pm for general enquiries and 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm for emergency food, and is managed by a part time Project Manager who is supported by a team of volunteers. We provide open access for adults where they can seek help, share their problems and receive advice and support. Help is tailored to the needs of the individual, and ranges from emergency food to budgeting help and advice.
The enquiries are many and varied, ranging from debt, family, housing and addiction problems. Emergency food packs are available for those in difficult circumstances and are referred to The Olive Branch by other care professionals. The Olive Branch networks with many other organisations such as Citizens Advice, LCC, LDHAS, Christians Against Poverty (CAP), Global Link and local churches to facilitate help for enquirers.
Donations of food, tents and sleeping bags will be gratefully received. We also recognise the emotional needs of people who seek our help, understanding the value of self empowerment.