ENFG was formed in October 2005, out of contact and coordination with the East Northants District Council. This came from their desire to have a real and effective faith component and voice involved in the government’s Local Strategic partnership framework. The contact developed to the point that a regular group of faith based bodies was meeting regularly and having input into the local situation. Funding then became available from the Welland Partnership to fund a community Audit of faith based activities in our region. During this process, Government ‘Change Up’ funding then became available via the local Voluntary and community sector group SERVE to facilitate the setting up of the Faith Group as a formal group in October 2005. This included the employment of a part-time Development Worker.
The work then developed and grew to incorporate all active churches in our region and identify key projects that we could facilitate. Arising out of this development has seen the setting up of Street Pastors in East Northants in 2008 (now spreading to all areas in the county). The establishment of the Rushden Night Shelter in 2007/08. In 2008/09 we Established a link with Christians Against Poverty to see 5 local churches adopt and use the Money management Debt management process and offer training and support course in our region.The setting up of the joint churches counselling service was facilitated in 2009, and a autism awareness and support project in 2010 in conjunction with the Diocese of Peterborough. Arising out of the Rushden Night Shelter facility has now sprung a community Cafe and client support scheme, a supported housing moving on project, a food distribution scheme and a recycling project helping people back into housing.
A follow on 5 year audit survey of faith communities was carried out in 2009 to asses the impact of the ENFG and to gain greater details from the original survey and to monitor community impacting endeavours by the faith sector.
In 2013 a board of trustees was established and we became a CIO. This is the latest stage of development as we seek to grow and develop as an organisation.