Welcome to BeSpace

BeSpace is a Christian charity based in Oxfordshire that equips local churches to facilitate prayer and reflective spaces in schools.

About BeSpace

Creating space to Be.

We are passionate about seeing every child, young person and adult have space to pray or reflect in their daily lives. We love seeing the impact prayer and reflection spaces have on those who encounter them.

We are so excited to see the day when every church in Oxfordshire has an active part in building prayer and reflection spaces in their local schools and wider community, giving children, young people and adults the opportunity and tools to pray or reflect regularly. Imagine the impact of that!

Since 2010 in Oxfordshire we have seen…

prayer and reflection spaces in schools

schools reached (more than 1/3 of the schools in the County)

students impacted

new schools have had a space since Sept 2022

prayer and reflection spaces in 2022/23 academic year

prayer and reflection spaces in 2023/24 academic year

prayer and reflection spaces in schools

schools reached (more than 1/3 of the schools in the County)

students impacted

new schools have had a space since Sept 2022

prayer and reflection spaces in 2022/23 academic year

prayer and reflection spaces in 2023/24 academic year

Meet the team…

Rosy Taylor, Area Networker

Rosy is our Area Networker for the Vale of White Horse region, covering the towns and villages around Faringdon, Wantage and Abingdon. Rosy is part of Standfast (St Andrew’s family service team) in Shrivenham and has worked with many families in the area, both as a families worker with the Chaplaincy at the Defence Academy in Shrivenham and by working in a local primary school for many years.  She is an avid believer in the vision and values of BeSpace and is very excited to be part of the team.

Contact Rosy: rosy@bespace.be.

Patrick Gale, Trustee

Patrick has had an extensive career in financial software and retail financial services, holding non executive director roles for several organisations and acting as trustee for a number of Christian organisations. Patrick brings great experience from these roles to BeSpace.

Nina Oskarsdottir, Trustee

Nina is the associate pastor at Emmanuel Church Northwood, before this she was the family pastor at St Aldates Church. She has a heart for church unity and reaching children across Oxford. Before moving to Oxford Nina had experience working with children and young people in Norway where she also functioned as a trustee in organisations similar to BeSpace. These experiences are valuable as she contributes to the work of BeSpace.

Rt. Revd Gavin Collins, The Bishop of Dorchester, Patron

Gavin is an Area Bishop in the Diocese of Oxford, with responsibility for supporting clergy, parishes, and schools across the County of Oxfordshire, as well as being the lead bishop for Rural Ministry and for Ministry and Mission. He is delighted to support BeSpace as Patron, as BeSpace provides a wonderful way for children to come to experience prayer, peace and the love of God, and is also a great opportunity for churches to build partnerships with their local schools. Gavin’s interests include cycling, running, international travel and engagement with politics. He is an avid Brighton and Hove Albion fan, which, he says, proves that he is a man of faith.

Harriet Baldock, Project Co-ordinator

Harriet is our co-ordinator for BeSpace, she is based in Bicester but travels all over Oxfordshire to help facilitate prayer spaces. Harriet attends Highway church where prayer is seen as a vital part of christian life and is incorporated into church life in a variety of ways. Harriet is also a nanny and has worked in childcare for over 7 years. This has given her lots of experience in working with children and how best to give them the space they need to express themselves. 

Contact Harriet: harriet@bespace.be.

Geoff Bayliss, Trustee

Geoff is our chair of trustees. He is the Rector of Cowley St James and St Francis church in Cowley, Oxford. Before becoming ordained he was a secondary school teacher and brings his experience of education to BeSpace.

Mary Krutz, Trustee

Mary was previously our CEO. In January 2021 she decided to leave the company to spend time with her young daughter. However, we are delighted that she has agreed to become a Trustee to continue to share all the knowledge and experience she gained whilst working for BeSpace.

How does it work?

BeSpace works in connection with local churches to provide prayer and reflection spaces within schools in Oxfordshire, with the aim that the church team is trained during the first prayer and reflection space and takes responsibility for providing subsequent prayer and reflection spaces for the school. Where a school has no direct church link we will discuss with the local church(es) how they can take prayer and reflection spaces forward for the school.

Prayer spaces in schools are day events or week long events where students can experience prayer and reflection in creative ways. In a practical sense this involves transforming a physical space (a classroom, library, meeting room etc.) so students can creatively explore faith and spirituality from a broadly Christian perspective.

In a primary school, typically half a class will access the prayer and reflection space for approximately 45 minutes, for secondary schools this is usually a whole class for a class period. The session includes a short introduction on what Christians believe about prayer and what reflection is, time to explore the interactive activities set up in the room and coming together again as a class at the end to give their feedback.

The students are invited to reflect on the different activities as they complete them or pray if they would like to. Prayer and reflection spaces help students to engage with spirituality and prayer in a creative, experiential, inclusive and safe way.

Prayer and reflection spaces are available free of charge to any schools within Oxfordshire. We have an extensive range of activity resources and soft furnishings that churches can access to run a prayer and reflection space for their local school.

If you would like to set up a meeting with BeSpace to discuss the possibility of a prayer and reflection space within your school please email us at info@bespace.be.

Information for churches

A primary school prayer and reflection space requires volunteers for each activity area (typically 4) and a session leader. A secondary school prayer and reflection space requires 3 adults present in the room (including a session leader). We ask the local church to find volunteers and leaders for the prayer and reflection space.

BeSpace provides equipment resources, training and the support of one staff member on the ground for the first 1-2 days a first prayer space is running. This staff member will model setup and how to lead sessions and give feedback and support to the session leaders for the first 1-2 days the prayer and reflection space is running. For the remainder of the prayer and reflection space the local church/ organisation will lead the days independently, pack down the prayer and reflection space at the end and return the equipment to the BeSpace store.

We hope that for second and subsequent prayer and reflection spaces, churches are confident in collecting and returning equipment and setting up and running the prayer and reflection space independently. BeSpace provides ongoing support for churches running prayer and reflection spaces in their local schools which includes advice, resources, and training.

Information for schools

Prayer and reflection spaces support schools in developing Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development (SMSC), in teaching of Religious Education (RE) and for Church schools in meeting the requirements of SIAMS (Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools). 

How to support BeSpace

 

  • Volunteer at a local prayer and reflection space.
  • Become an area networker for your area. Here is a link to the job role.
  • Donate to BeSpace. Here is a link to our donation page and our give as you live scheme or email info@bespace.be for other ways to donate.
  • Pray for BeSpace!

Free resources

We want to make it as easy as possible for you to be able to run Prayer and reflection Spaces regularly in the life of your local School and in the wider community. Click on the link below to find useful template documents for organising a prayer and reflection space and activity ideas that you can download and use in your Prayer and reflection Space.

The Prayer Spaces in Schools website also contains a wealth of ideas of activities which you may find helpful as you plan Prayer and reflection Spaces regularly.