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The Faith Covenant

Two hands in a handshake

Preston City Council is committed to welcome the involvement of faith groups in shaping and delivering services and social action on an equal basis with other groups.

Respect those of differing beliefs and faith traditions and work together for the common good.

What is the Faith Covenant?

The Faith Covenant is a joint commitment between faith communities and local authorities to a set of principles that guide engagement, aiming to remove some of the mistrust that exists and to promote open, practical working on all levels.

The Council and Faith Groups are committed to the following commitments.

The official Faith Covenant declaration (PDF) [1MB] can be downloaded here.

We are committed to

  • Building relationships and trust with faith groups on common agendas
  • Adopting strategies for the engagement of faith communities in consultation exercises
  • Encouraging faith groups and their members to be involved in the reshaping and redesign of local services
  • Establishing clear guidelines for partnership and identifying sources of potential funding
  • Sharing training and learning opportunities between faith communities and the Council
  • Invite Faith Groups to take an active role in civic events to reflect the diversity of the city
  • Faith-based organisations who sign up to this Covenant commit to work actively with Preston City Council in the design and delivery of services to the public and their communities

Faith groups commit to

  • Seeking opportunities to bring people together to serve and empower the community, particularly its poorest and most isolated members
  • Serving equally all local residents seeking to access the social action public services they offer
  • Ensuring good governance is in place, with excellence in child protection, support for vulnerable people, health and safety, accountability and transparency
  • Responding to consultations where appropriate
  • Sharing training and learning opportunities between faith communities and the local authority

The Members of the Faith Covenant

Councillor Nweeda Khan - Chair of the Faith Covenant and Cabinet Member for Communities and Social Justice

Chair of the Faith Covenant and Cabinet Member for Communities and Social Justice - Councillor Nweeda Khan

Councillor Matthew Brown - Leader of Preston City Council

Councillor Matthew Brown - Leader of Preston City Council

Adrian Phillips - Chief Executive of Preston City Council

Adrian Phillips - Chief Executive of Preston City Council

Andrew Pratt

Andrew Pratt - Bishop of Blackburn's Interfaith Advisor

Andy is the Bishop of Blackburn's Interfaith Advisor. He worships at St Stephen's Church in Preston. His Christian faith is central to all he does.

Kailash Parekh MBE, JP

Kailash Parekh

I currently serve as the Hindu Representative on the Preston Faith Covenant.

I am very passionate about promoting equality and diversity, particularly in the field of education and promoting greener environment.

My other voluntary work includes serving as a local Magistrate on the Lancashire Bench, Vice Chair on the Racial Equality and Diversity Board and as a School Governor at St Stephen's primary school.

Through my work in the community, I have positively contributed in promoting better community cohesion, better faith and  Race Relations.

Lakhbir Singh Rai

Malcolm Craig

Malcolm Craig

Raised an Anglican I became an Evangelical Christian at University and served in a local Baptist church in a deprived area of Birmingham. I later investigated the Bahá'í Faith and declared in 1983.

Since retiring from General Practice in 2007, I have been able to give more time to Bahá'í community activities as well as promoting inter-faith ones mainly through 'Building Bridges Preston' (formerly Preston Faith Forum).

Currently I am a member of the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the City of Preston and a Trustee of Building Bridges Preston

Mukhtar Master

Born and brought up in Preston, Mukhtar is passionate about his faith, his family and Preston North End. 

A practising Muslim, Mukhtar attends his local mosque in Broadgate, Masjid-e-Saliheen. 

A human rights activist, and part-time writer, Mukhtar recognises the important role of interfaith work and is prepared to push the boundaries of its stereotypical norms, by tackling difficult issues head-on.

Darren McMinn

Jeremy Dable

Jereemy Dable

Jeremy  has lived in Preston for 30 years.

He works as a Barrister and Commercial Mediator. He will try to continue to represent the Jewish people of Preston, irrespective of their leaning within Judaism or whether they have any leaning at all.

As Jews often fail to agree among ourselves, finding common ground with others is, at times, arduous; especially as we are, in number, the least among you, but no less "stiff-necked" than in ancient times.

Even so, finding common ground remains a necessary challenge in order to advance social cohesion and any hope for progressing our society together. We remain curious and hopeful. We offer respect and demand it in equal measure.

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