Let me tell you a story about a pastor called John who lives in a small town in Scotland. You’ve never heard of him and you’ve never heard of his community. Where he lives unemployment is high, drug abuse is off the charts, and life is hard and short. John was saved about 10 years ago on a holiday
On pages 121-122, McGarvey tells us, ‘The conversation about poverty is usually dominated by people with very little experience of being poor…. It’s this deficit between those who tend to lead the conversation and those who experience the issue that not only impedes progress but also leads to people
McGarvey is at his angriest (and most correct) when he is disseminating the effects of gentrification in our schemes. To him, this process is basically about ‘the practice of getting rid of any evidence that the community is working-class’ (p74). It’s hard to disagree when I look at my own
A Letter from the Music Coordinator In the run-up to Christmas, 20schemes music put on a mini-tour of the U.K. visiting some of the 20schemes church plants providing them with a rehearsed group of musicians for the purpose of putting on a carol service. The aim of the tour was to encourage each
I was looking forward to reading this book after hearing so much about it. I was hoping this was going to be the UK’s answer to the brilliant Hillbilly Elegy by JD Vance. Written by Darren McGarvey, a native of Pollock, Glasgow, this book was everything I hoped it would be, yet with a sad finale (at
This is the final section of a three-part series on Theodore Dalrymple’s book Life at the Bottom, which explores the lives of the ‘underclass’ living on schemes. In the chapter ‘Choosing to Fail’, Dalrymple strikes right at the heart of the problems we face in the schemes. Commenting on the many
This is the second in a three-part series on Theodore Dalrymple’s book Life at the Bottom, which explores the lives of the ‘underclass’ living on schemes and council estates in the UK. Dalrymple’s chapter ‘Goodbye, Cruel World’ is particularly helpful in catching the underlying social pressures of
My name is Carrie, I’m almost 60, and while most of my friends and other people my age are preparing for retirement, I did the unthinkable. Eight months ago I sold my belongings and left family, kids, and precious grandkids to move across the ocean to a small community in the east end of Glasgow.