Our Camberley Branch
The BESOM is a Christian Organisation that exists to make a difference to the lives of others, by inspiring follower's of Jesus to put God's word into action: to respond out of love, not duty.
We operate within in Surrey Heath. See What We Do.
We started in 2009 operating out of a single garage, in 2015 moved to our own warehouse & became a Charitable Incorporate Organisation 2015.
We help people from all walks of life that have hit a crisis, but packs are provided only on referral by Camberley Frontline (Debt & Benefit Advice), Citizens Advice, Churches in and around Camberley, Schools, Accent (Housing Associations), Doctors & Health visitors, Family Support Workers, Mental Health Teams etc.
If you are seeking support then any of the above with whom you have a contact will be able to refer you.
Everyone at the BESOM gives their time for free and come (mainly) from churches across Surrey Heath.
We have collection points for Donations in the Following Churches:
Camberley: St. Paul's, St. Michael's, St. Mary's, High Cross,
St. Martins & Heatherside
Frimley: St. Peter's & St. Francis', Frimley Baptist
Frimley Green: Frimley Green Methodist
Mytchett: Mytchett Baptist
Bagshot: St. Anne's & The Brook
Lightwater: All Saint's
Windlesham: St. John the Baptist
See a map for our Donations Points
Our Other Branches
We have further branches across the country to find out more go to our BESOM Network Site:
Foundation and History
The Besom was founded in 1987 by James Odgers, who left the law in London for Hong Kong to be part of a ministry (St Stephen's Society) caring for people coming out of heroin addiction. It was distressing to him to see the level of absolute human degradation faced by so many in that city, but also the chasm between those who had and those in need, and on the flight home he was left wondering what to do about it. It was then that he wrote down the mission statement of what would eventually become The Besom, that it should be a bridge between those who want to give money, time, skills or things; and those who are in need.
‘I remember distinctly feeling that I should establish a charity that helped people to give – rather than one that was directly focused on the poor. That way, lots of those in need could be helped whilst the many people who wanted to give but were never sure where their money went nor what it achieved, could also be encouraged by targeted giving … it never crossed my mind for a minute that there might be other sides to Besom later on – time and skills, urban gleaning and clothes and furniture and food. Nor that others might want to take up the idea in other parts of the country and abroad. It was just an old Tandy computer and me in my basement flat in London.’
The first Besom was thus born in the spare bedroom of James’ London flat, and now there are dozens of Besoms all over the country seeking to abide by the same principles and vision.
In terms of the name, James was originally nicknamed ‘Besom’ by his sisters as a child, as he was often to be found sweeping up leaves in the yard of their family home. The word ‘Besom’ in fact refers to a traditional broom made of twigs, giving rise to the strapline ‘sweep away suffering’. Perhaps in line with this mission statement, one of the word’s first recorded usages (by William Cowper in the 18th century) is in the sentence ‘Sweep thy soul clean with the besom of the drede of God’ (Luke 11:25). It can also be found in one of the earliest Gospel editions, dating back to 1000 AD.