Bristol Multi-Faith Forum (BMFF) was instituted by the Bristol City Council in 2004, following consultation with the city’s faith communities and community sector, considering the wider city objectives. Funded by the City Council, BMFF became an independent body in 2007.
BMFF acts as an agency for inter-faith and intercultural community cohesion and social harmony. We encourage all religious communities and denominations to stand together in fraternity and fellowship for peace and justice. The Multi-Faith Forum aims to provide opportunities for communication and relationship building between people of different faiths and enable people of diverse communities and traditions to engage together in the direction and development of the city. In recent years, the Multi-Faith Forum has started to spread its wings to encourage partnership working with faith and statutory organizations to engage in the building of a strong, diverse community. We talk to one another and together talk with the wider community of Bristol.
BMFF organise the ‘Diverse Doors Open Day’, which is an annual event that offers the people the opportunity to visit a wide range of places of worship and learn about the many faith communities in Bristol. We also play a collaborative role in organising the Bristol Lord Mayor’s Inter-Faith Civic Celebration conducted on an annual basis. We also arrange ‘Faith Trails’ that enables people to connect with various places of worship.
BMFF also actively promotes the health and well being of the faith communities. We act as the lead partner for NHS BT’s Blood and Organ Donation campaign in the West of England region as well as an agency to promote health walks, to reduce social isolation and loneliness, to create awareness of dementia, to support counselling services for bereaved families, to eradicate hate-crime and to enhance ecological preservation amongst various communities in Bristol.
It is in building understanding, friendship and cooperation that people of different faiths come to recognize that, while there are differences, we hold a lot of values and hopes in common as well as a conviction that life is a sacred gift. We believe that the careful building of a good relationship, which the Forum exists to pursue adds to a more peaceful and robust society.
BMFF Steering Group:
Cllr Tom Aditya – Chair
Cllr James Hackett – Treasurer
Mrs Tripti Megeri – Secretary
Mr George Mazidian
Mrs Marie Hackett
Mrs Parmjit Kaur
Mr Abdul Tariq
Mrs Nikki Hallur
Mr Mohamed Mahumud
BMFF seeks to achieve its aims by:
- Giving a voice for people of faith following a decade where faith has been greatly sidelined.
- Serving as a Forum for Faith Communities to enter into dialogue with each other and with relevant organs of the statutory, private and voluntary sectors.
- Developing and nurturing leadership in the faith communities, in partnership with those communities, in order to do the above and also to be a platform for focus on commonalities and shared objectives amongst the faiths.
With this in mind the Forum will seek to:
- Promote the interests and concerns of the Faith Communities in the City of Bristol.
- Provide representatives for, and participate in the decision-making of, citywide partnerships and other bodies where joint faith communities’ representatives are required by statutory or other agencies, or where faith community representation is optional and the Forum decides to participate.
- Develop relationships with key people in the statutory, private and voluntary sectors.
- Maximise the take up of appropriate statutory and other funding by faith communities.
- Encourage joint faith social action where practical to respond to opportunities and needs in the communities of Bristol.
- Act as a body or channel for consultation by statutory and other bodies who are seeking the views of faith communities.
- Work in collaboration with the Bristol Inter-Faith Group and “The Inter Faith Network UK’ where appropriate.
- Promote intra-faith and inter(multi)-faith dialogue.
- Support the development of faith forums, or similar bodies, for each faith community.
- Be active in influencing policy and providing responses to government and other consultations.
The Forum is not exclusive. Individual faith groups and establishments are welcome to be involved. However, we do have an objective to establish forums for the larger denominations in order to give a united voice. The first of these, the Muslim Forum, has already been established and is functioning.
All of our events and activities are publicised in our monthly e-bulletin. We also produce a bi-annual news magazine – and of course our annual report. The best way of keeping in touch is to sign up to our mailing list. As an individual, you can do that by following this link here and filling in your contact details. Organisations can sign up to receive our newsletter and find out how to work in partnership with us by following this other link. In each case, please remember to click the button at the end of the form, giving us permission to add you to our mailing list.
Voice and Influence Partnership:
Instituted and funded by the Bristol City Council under its Equalities agenda, Bristol Multi-Faith Forum is also part of the Voice and Influence Partnership to give a chance for people to involve in city government’s decision-making, to encourage participation in consultations and to bring about positive changes in local communities. BMFF is a Steering Member of the Voice and Influence Partnership which brings together The Care Forum (TCF), Bristol Older People’s Forum (BOPF), LGBT Bristol, SARI, WECIL and BME Voice. If you want to help shape the things that happen in our city, if you want to be influential and have your say, then this project is for you. You can sign up online here or visit the project webpage here to find out more and request a paper copy. If you don’t live in Bristol or belong to one or more of these groups you can still join the partnership and we will send you our newsletter and updates on our work.