We are not called by God to do extraordinary things, but to do ordinary things with extraordinary love.
— Jean Vanier

Spa 61 has a vision to unite the women of Harbour Church to bring love, hope and dignity to the women of Portsmouth. Running monthly pamper mornings, we transform the church into a spa and offer beauty treatments, a delicious brunch and a warm welcome. We first started in Spring 2017 and since then have welcomed nearly 200 women.  

The plan originally was to invite those in obviously vulnerable situations – on the street, in refuges, in hostels – but quite quickly we noticed that lots of women were coming who weren’t from those contexts. We soon discovered that over nail painting, footspas, facials and arm massages, ladies would share their stories of bereavement, illness, addiction, recovery, financial hardship, asylum seeking, domestic abuse and loss. We in the Spa 61 team hold on to the fact that every one of us experiences vulnerability at different times in our lives – but some of us are better at hiding it. We come together, woman to woman, shoulder to shoulder, finding so much in common with these ladies whom we feel privileged to meet and delighted to serve.  

The driving force behind Spa 61 is simple – to love the women we meet. In Isaiah 61 we are reminded to come close to the broken hearted, the captives, and the poor. To comfort those in despair and remind them of their worth where it has been stripped from them. We have hope for the women we meet because we know that they have more potential in life than they know – they are the ‘oaks of righteousness’ (Isaiah 61: 3). We aim to provide women with dignity, encouragement, a wonderful brunch, warm conversation and lots of fun! We want to show them that they are worthy and deserve to be spoilt, whatever their story. We have been delighted to make connections with the Red Cross, hostels, Portsmouth City Council, Stop Domestic abuse, carers and recovery centres and many other services who love that their ladies can come to us and simply be reminded, in amongst whatever battles they may be facing, that they are worthy of unconditional love.  

 We are so delighted to see this ministry growing and are excited to see how we can reach more ladies in Portsmouth and go deeper in relationship with the ladies we have already met.  

If you would like to get involved with Spa 61 we need many hands for many roles! If you can simply make a cup of tea that’s a crucial role – equally if you are a trained beautician we would love your help! For more information please email liz@harbourchurchportsmouth.org or fill in the form below!



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