Tuesday, 28 January 2020


New Chesterfield community hub provides 'home from home' space

A new community centre has opened its doors to provide a ‘home from home’ in one of the most deprived areas of Chesterfield.

Umbrellas Cosy Hub will bring a childcare base, craft groups, bingo, exercise classes and a quiet spot for a coffee and a chat to the Grangewood area.
Led by organisers Jane and George Bentley, the team has taken over an underused community building at the centre of the Grangewood estate on Burns Close.
“We are looking to be a place of safety and sanctuary for people in the area, somewhere where they can come for a coffee and a chat, or just to be quiet and get some mind space,” Jane said.
The hub was officially opened on Friday, January 24 by the Lord Lieutenant of Derbyshire William Tucker, and residents and businesses were given an opportunity to check out the new facilities.
Jane said Friday’s launch was ‘very successful’ and ‘a great way to start the new life that will be taking place at Umbrellas Cosy Hub’.
“Several people who were there commented on how much it felt like being in a home from home, and one person said how for them it had already become somewhere where they felt safe and could relax,” she added.
The Umbrellas team – now part of the Community Transformation charity – began their search for a new community hub for the area in 2017 and the launch event was a moment of celebration after a lot of hard work.
They had initially hoped to develop a nearby pub, but after this stalled set their sights on developing the old community centre on Burns Close after securing a five-year lease from Chesterfield Borough Council.
It will be open Monday to Friday, 10am-4pm, for anyone to pop in.
The carer and baby group will take place on Tuesday mornings and will be named Cosy Cubs, while chair-based exercise classes will take place on Monday afternoons at 2pm.

Tuesday, 21 January 2020


This Sunday is our first 'whole church meeting' of 2020.  A chance for us all to catch up and the opportunity to join in worship together.  Dave is excited about what God is showing him for this new year and he will be sharing some of that with us .  Remind everyone you see to be there and you are very welcome to invite someone to come along with you.

Cafe Church will be on as usual 6-7pm at the Cosy Hub, Burns Close, Grangewood.

Wednesday, 8 January 2020


Come and Celebrate Chesterfield Street and School Pastors

Thursday 27th February 7.30pm

St John's Church,
Walton Back Lane, Walton

You are invited to join us to celebrate the wonderful work of Chesterfield Street Pastors and Chesterfield School Pastors.
There will be worship, a free buffet and first hand accounts from some of our volunteers.

(We will have to fit in a few mins of AGM business while we are all together but that will be kept to a minimum!)

If you don't know what we do - come along and find out.
If you are interested in finding out more about what's involved - this is the evening for you.
If you are a supporter we would love you to be there and please bring your friends!


Monday, 6 January 2020


We're Ready For You 2020
We’ve got muscles, talent, passion, singers, dancers, faith, entrepreneurs, footballers and much more.  However, before we kick off the new year, we just have to congratulate our students on their achievements in 2019. We had 15 graduates in year 9 and record pass rates from our students in their state school exams.
Well done to our arts students who performed a spectacular Christmas musical called ‘The Mystery of Christmas’, starring Jane Blonde, a curious reporter trying to unravel the story of the birth of Jesus.
There are 260 students and their families all looking forward to the opportunities The University of Life has to offer this new year.
New Year Resolution - Become a 2020 Dreambuilder
Congratulations to our all students who participated in our Christmas musical. Watch on You Tube.
New Staff
We are in the process of making a few changes to our line up of teachers. We have staff stepping up into new roles and new challenges. Lisiane is moving from year 3 to be our year 4 teacher and Raquel is moving from year 4 to a completely new position in administration and accounting.
In addition we are recruiting and training some new staff and are excited to see our young teachers growing into a strong professional team.

You can support this team by setting up a standing order to UNiViDA this January. Set Up Now
Revision and Review
The University of Life offers an additional 20 hours per week of quality Christian education to children aged 7-14. The needs of our 11-14 year olds are constantly changing as they face instability in the state school system where they study for 4 hours a day.
When they arrive with us, they want help with their homework but also need support to negotiate life as a teenager in the complicated social world of the slums. We are looking at how we balance academic support with the need for character, skills development and discipleship.
Sponsor an 11-14 year old - Become a 2020 Dreambuilder
January is Celia’s last month with us because she is retiring and taking up another important role of caring for her mother. We will dearly miss her strength, matriarchal love and vibrant faith.
As you can imagine this role has been no small task and Celia has competently brought stability, management and organization into the main office ever since!
Celia began working for Marc as a teacher almost twenty years ago. She quickly fell in love with the work of The University of Life but not so much with the role of being a teacher. In 2002 she became the secretary, working with parents, registering children, bookkeeping and keeping up with all the other administration required by the project.
Thank you Celia for your years of dedication and service,
we wish you a wonderful retirement.
Olaf in the Tropics Photo Competition
This little chap arrived at The University of Life in December and he’s been stoically spending Fortaleza’s non-winter with the kids.
He became the subject of a very emotional (this is Brazil!) photo competition where entries had to represent the different activities and services UNiViDA provides in Brazil. This was the winning entry from our year 3 class.
Please visit and 'like' the UNIVIDA Facebook Page
Please visit and 'like' the UNIVIDA Facebook Page
Climate Change In Our Back Yard
The picture below you how close the favela is to our classrooms. This kind of construction against the main perimeter wall of the project is having a significant impact on the circulation of wind and average temperature of the compound. We have an urgent need to plant trees that will provide privacy and shade.
We have proposals from local business' for tree planting and for the installation of solar panels to help reduce our growing electricity bills. 
If you think you can help by giving, fundraising or helping UNIVIDA with grant writing, please let us know.

For more information email ruth.marques@univida.org.
Become a Dreambuilder - click to set up a standing order



Dreambuilders is the name of our monthly giving programme because through your support we are able to build the dreams of a child living in the favela. 

To set up a standing order and become a Dream BUILDER, download our Giving Form

Email UK Anne Salway: office@univida.org

Email Brazil: ruth.marques@univida.org
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Friday, 3 January 2020


We hope you had a fabulous Christmas and that you are raring to go at the start of a new year.  Our Sunday meetings will be taking place in Chesterfield, Alfreton and Clay Cross at 10.30 am.  Ignite will be joining us in Chesterfield just for this week.

In Chesterfield we will be celebrating the goodness of God in worship and in testimony.  If you have some encouragement to share come prepared. 

Cafe Church also restarts today 6-7 pm at the Umbrellas Cosy Hub, Burns Close, Grangewood.

Looking forward to a great new year adventuring with Jesus together.