Quaker work

Quaker Work in the Middle EastOur belief in "that of God" in everyone has led Quakers to take up those causes which support people rejected or neglected by our own society, or living in deprivation because of the accident of where they were born (Quakers were amongst those who founded Oxfam). Our belief in "removing the causes of war" leads us into areas of conflict whether locally (for example between neighbours) or in other countries (for example in trying to give child soldiers in Africa a way back to normal life), and led Quakers to help found the University of Bradford Department of Peace Studies (the largest in the world). Our belief in living simply leads us into work to help the environment.

In Reading for example, Quakers started the Reading Mediation Centre (unfortunately now no longer running), work within Circles of Support and Accountability for the rehabilitation of sex offenders, and have funded Europe-wide research into the imprisonment of women.

Many Quakers choose careers which could be seen as Quaker work, such as teaching, medicine, and social work.

As William Penn (who at one time regularly worshipped with Quakers in Reading) once wrote: “True Godliness don't turn men out of the world, but enables them to live better in it, and excites their endeavours to mend it”.

None of this means that Quakers manage to live their ideals better than others. We have often (for example) found ourselves trying out our peacemaking skills within our own communities.