A year in the life of a London priest – in pictures

Photographer Jim Grover shadows south London priest Kit Gunasekera as he unites his diverse congregation with prayer, sermons – and fish suppers.


XLP Anti-Knife Crime Campaign

A great new video from XLP:

We believe that every young person should have the chance for a positive future. Together we can encourage them to make wise life choices: to stay in school, stay out of gangs and knife crime, and work hard to realise their incredible potential

We don’t give up. Help us to help them.

Please watch and share our new anti-knife crime campaign and give as generously as you can. #wedontgiveup

Debt, unemployment and property prices have combined to stop millennials taking their share of western wealth

The Guardian have published some interesting data that shows that young adults face a huge economic challenge:

A combination of debt, joblessness, globalisation, demographics and rising house prices is depressing the incomes and prospects of millions of young people across the developed world, resulting in unprecedented inequality between generations.

A Guardian investigation into the prospects of millennials – those born between 1980 and the mid-90s, and often otherwise known as Generation Y – has found they are increasingly being cut out of the wealth generated in western societies.

Where 30 years ago young adults used to earn more than national averages, now in many countries they have slumped to earning as much as 20% below their average compatriot. Pensioners by comparison have seen income soar.

A more realistic Barbie

Finally Mattel have announced that they are launching a new range of Barbie dolls with three different body shapes, seven skin tones and 24 hair colours. Finally, our children can play with Barbie dolls that look like real people!

Although she’s long been considered the universal ideal for a woman’s figure, an analysis of her doll-size shape in proportion to a fully grown woman shows Barbie is anatomically impossible and would be reduced to walking on all fours and incapable of lifting anything.

The shocking experiment by Rehabs.com was aimed at those with eating disorders who are “dying to be Barbie.”  Barbie is supposed to be 5 feet, 9 inches tall and 110 pounds, so underweight that she could not menstruate.  The average American woman is 5 feet, 4 inches tall and 166 pounds.

Barbie infographic

I am hopeful that these new bodies – tall, petite and curvy – will go some way in reinforcing that all-important message that beauty comes in various shapes and sizes.  The different skin tones in the new dolls is a massively welcome change too.  Dora and Doc McStuffins aside, UK toy shops have, for too long, been filled with mostly white faces – something which just doesn’t reflect the world our kids live in.

Mattel say they recognised that ‘Millennial Moms’ were looking for diversity, I’m just amazed that they hadn’t seen that in Generation X.  This change has been a long time coming.  Mattel’s Imagine The Possibilities campaign which showed girls playing with their Barbie dolls as if they were scientists, vets, sports coaches and more was a step in the right direction, but this move goes so much further to reflect what parents actually want from a doll.