Chaplain Jenny takes to canal

jenny salvation army
jenny salvation army

A SALVATION Army minister is walking on water – almost – to deliver support for people living on canal boats.

Captain Jenny Dibsdall has been appointed Waterways Chaplain and is even getting rowing tuition in a dingy to fulfil her role.

fieldings boat salvation army

fieldings boat salvation army

She trudges towpaths all over the region to listen to the problems of barge dwellers and deliver practical help.

She offers benefit advice, debt advice, food parcels, clothing and, ironically, fresh water.

The mission, which is funded jointly by all denomination churches, has become so successful that the Salvation Army is appealing for more volunteer canal chaplains for the city.

Said Jenny: What we need are people to become involved, to adopt a stretch of tow path or river and commit to walking at least once a week so they build up relationships with the regular walkers and boaters.

“This is not evangelism in a mission-type way. It is being Christ in the community, befriending people of faith and no faith.

Already Jenny has built up a list of battles to fight on behalf of the canal community.

She is concerned that boat dwellers often cannot vote or register with a GP because they hano postcode.

The Salvation Army has a history of helping canal folk and once held worship and singing meetings on boat roofs.

In the 1950s waterways chaplains, Majors Frederick and Ivy Fielding even had their own barge – aptly named Salvo.

Anybody wishing to volunteer should call Jenny on 07717 813682 or email