Centenary Project

The Centenary Project seeks to equip the local church to effectively engage, grow and disciple a new generation of young people, children and families.

In March 2014, Bishop’s Council agreed to commit £1,000,000 from its historical reserves to fund and support an increase in the work with children, families and young people in order to serve the common good, nurture faith and grow disciples. The funding is primarily aimed at the most deprived parishes within the diocese.

If your church is considering a Centenary Project Worker, you can download the criteria and application form here.

Check out our current job vacancies here.

Email Helen Cockayne (Project Leader) on helen.cockayne@sheffield.anglican.org



The report “From Anecdote to Evidence” identified the most important factors associated with church decline to be the church’s failure to keep young people in their teens and into adulthood alongside the lack of staffing and programmes for young people.

Sheffield Diocese is reaching crisis point for young people. Recent statistics suggest that 1 in 5 young people are living below the poverty line[1], that over 16% of 16-24 year olds are not in education or training[2].

Combined with these statistics, church attendance for young people is at an all-time low of about 1%[3], showing that the church has an amazing opportunity to play a role in these young lives.



  • The objective of the Centenary Project (CP) is to enable a step change in the ministry and mission amongst children, young people and families across the Diocese of Sheffield.
  • The initial funding will be for either Children & Family Workers or Youth Workers, referred collectively as Centenary Project Workers (CPWs) - they will be accountable to a Centenary Project Leader but rooted in the local parish church and managed locally with central support.
  • The CP is Diocese wide but will prioritise areas of higher deprivation, or locations identified strategically, where a CPW could make a real and sustainable impact.  The CP also identifies a need for a bias toward resourcing Doncaster and Rotherham but does not exclude Sheffield.
  • The CPWs will be a part of a network, coordinated by the Centenary Project Leader, connecting CPWs and other youth, children and families workers in the Diocese together for training, envisioning, support and prayer.
  • The Centenary Project Leader will:
    • Assist parishes and Mission Partnerships in shaping applications for CPWs.
    • Provide mentoring and coaching for the CPWs and provide or signpost appropriate training.
    • Grow and coordinate a learning network of CPWs and other youth, children and families workers in the diocese.
  • The CPWs will not work alone, but have good support from the parish, where they will build teams of volunteers and connect across parish boundaries.



If you have identified ministry to children, young people and families as a priority in your Mission Action Plan, you may like to take a look at the criteria of this project to see if a Centenary Project Worker (either children's, families or youth) might be placed in your parish.  If you think your parish or mission partnership meets the criteria, please get in touch with Helen Cockayne (Centerary Project Leader) before completing the application form.

Download the criteria and application form here.  (Word format)

You can download a budget pro-forma here.  (Excel format)

Example Application Form (PDF format)


Centenary Project Review Dates

Applications to the Centenary Project will be reviewed on a quarterly basis, the deadlines for receipt of applications are as follows:-

26 June    
11 September    


Meet the Team

Click here to find out more about our current Centenary Project Workers.

The current Centenary Project Team (March '18)


[3] Child Average Sunday Attendance 0.8%, Average Weekly Attendance 1.04% (Statistics for Mission)