The Besom Vision
The Besom was founded by James Odgers in 1987. Early in that year, James left the practice of law in London to go to Hong Kong where he served in a Christian ministry involved with heroin addicts. What particularly affected him there was not so much the absolute levels of human degradation and poverty that he encountered but the ever widening gap that exists between those of us who have and can give and those who are in need. On the plane leaving Hong Kong in September 1987, James wrote the original mission statement for The Besom – that it should provide a bridge between those who want to give money, time, skills or things, and those who are in need. It ensures that what is given is used effectively. The Besom began in the spare bedroom of James’ basement flat in Shepherds Bush in London. There are now more than 20 other Besoms operating around the country and all follow the same principles and vision.
The Besom in Sheffield was formed out of a desire to see the church in Sheffield engage more actively with those living on the margins. It was whilst a few of us were praying that we heard of The Besom and decided to see if it was where God was leading us. We visited a Besom Training Conference at Holy Trinity Brompton in London and decided that it might be for us but we would keep on praying. Some time later we visited the then warehouse in London and spent a few days with there where we felt most strongly that it was what we were looking for.
We continued to pray and started our own Besom around fifteen years ago. We have a core team made up of members of different churches and meet weekly to plan our activities and we have two van runs a week to collect and deliver furniture. We also organise decorating and gardening projects for members of local churches. The ethos is very much that of being a bridge to allow others to cross the chasm of inequality between those who have and those in need. Our Besom is an independant body but supported by people from different churches of all denominations.
The BESOM in SHEFFIELD: a company limited by guarantee
Registered in England: Company Number: 6264674
Registered Office Address: 20 Bromwich Road, S8 0GF
Registered Charity: Number 1120586