‘I want to thank the Street Pastors who looked after my epileptic daughter on Saturday.  She doesn’t normally drink, and she wasn’t prepared for the effect of the alcohol. She was mortified the following day. I want to let those Pastors know how thankful I am that they called me and without any judgement stayed and looked after her. They were so kind to us and I am so grateful that they were there for my daughter.

This was just one of many thankyous received from the 351 people who were helped to come home safe last year by Vennture’s Street Pastors.

‘It doesn’t feel right that we get all the credit,’ says Ian Purcell leader of Vennture’s Street Presence, ‘There’s a whole team of people working to make sure Hereford’s Night Time Economy is among the safest in the UK. Venue owners, managers and door staff, CCTV, Lean on Me sixth form volunteers as well as the emergency services work seamlessly to make sure everyone has a good time and comes home safe.’

The exemplary collaboration between businesses, churches, Hereford BID, Hereford 6th Form and public agencies celebrates its 10th year anniversary this year. The members of HAND are again making a generous donation to support the work of Vennture’s volunteer Street Pastors.

‘Ten years ago too many people thought these people were clueless do-gooders,’ says Andy Welch Chair of HAND, ‘Now even those, who were most sceptical, cannot imagine working without them. They have transformed the Night Time Economy for the good of everyone. They have everyone’s respect.’

‘We would not be able to do what we do without the support of HAND members,’ says Ian Purcell. ‘HAND doorstaff keep their eyes open for anyone who is vulnerable and with the support of CCTV guide The Street Pastors to them. It’s an amazing team effort to make sure no one is left in a vulnerable state for than a few minutes.’

Street Pastors are known for giving out flip-flops and bottles of water. However, working in teams of 3, they are trained in everything from getting someone home safely in a taxi, to street triage of the injured and impaired to safeguarding anyone who is vulnerable.

They are always willing to lend a listening ear to anyone who just needs to chat.

Vennture volunteers come from diverse backgrounds – churched and unchurched. 

All go through a process of Safer Recruitment and selection. 

‘The church people are not their to preach at people but seek to bring practical meaning to the ‘power of Jesus’ love,’ says Ian Purcell. ‘We welcome anyone who shares our desire to help people without judgement.’

If you would like to volunteer contact Enquiries@vennture.org.uk or just Vennture on 0330 20 20 730 for more details.