“Our 7 wk course, held on Mondays, is tailored to voluntary chaplaincy in businesses and organisations – places like shopping centres, businesses and offices. Chaplaincy within hospitals and education are covered by their own training courses.
Our course covers an introduction to key skills and knowledge for workplace chaplaincy – listening, ‘being a guest’, making a difference, looking after yourself, understanding businesses etc – as well as reflecting on what workplace chaplaincy means to faiths and society. Our course is not accredited with any formal learning organisation, but is recognised by Birmingham Churches Together. There is a charge of £50 to cover some of the costs of the course, which can be paid when you join the course.
Most people who do the courses have had some life experience in listening/caring, and belong to a church/faith community. They are interested in working with people outside of the usual boundaries of their own faith and happy to work with people of other faiths. Chaplaincy is not an opportunity to overtly proselytise, but, if asked about faith matters, chaplains may help people to see where God may be at work in their lives.
In general, our course is not a commitment to chaplaincy: some people are just interested to know more, some decide that it is not for them, some decide to offer for a voluntary chaplaincy placement afterwards. We talk more about future options/thoughts towards the end of the course. There are unfortunately very few options for paid chaplaincy work: most are of a voluntary nature.
For background on ourselves, Churches and Industry Group Birmingham and Solihull (CIGB) has teams of voluntary chaplains to businesses, enterprises and organisations across Birmingham and Solihull, with about 60 volunteers altogether. Our chaplaincies are in places like Bullring and Touchwood Shopping Centres, NEC and ICC, Longbridge Extracare, National Express Buses, Kings Heath High St and the Fire Service.
- £50 to cover some of the costs of the course