A controversial church praised by politicians for its work to tackle knife crime has been accused of “sickening” allegations that some of its pastors pressured young people from the congregation to sell their own blood for money to donate to the church.
Some members of SPAC Nation, a church with a large congregation that includes vulnerable young people from impoverished areas, have been taking teenagers to donate blood for medical trials.
The controversial practice is known as “bleeding for seed” in the church and has been described as “vampire-like” exploitation by outraged critics of SPAC Nation.
Some members go to donate blood and are paid up to £100 by medical trial companies. This money is then handed by the young people over to the church’s pastors.
It is alleged some senior pastors at the church were actively encouraging the paid donations, until the church’s leader Tobi Adegboyega put a stop to the practice recently.
They were donating blood for money, it was a way to get seed. Former SPAC Nation member
I was a guest of Number 10 at the Conservative Manchester Conference. It was a great speech. I especially liked the detailed plan for young people! pic.twitter.com/EehpFTveBr— Tobi Adegboyega (@TobiAdegboyega_) October 2, 2019
Another young person said that they had regularly witnessed SPAC Nation members going to donate blood. They did not know which medical trial company this was at.
The teenager, who did not want to be named, said groups of about 11 people would meet in one of the church’s “trap houses” before going to donate.
Trap houses are safe houses run by the church’s pastors where young people live.
″′Bleeding for seed’, the blood thing, it was like once a week,”
“Community unit services are on a Tuesday. Before Tuesday [service] everyone would meet at the Love House trap house, and then a few people would go to donate blood. Afterwards they would go to the service at the Love House.”
She added: “They were donating blood for money, it was a way to get seed.”
“The extent to which there is criminal exploitation of children, going so far as to sell their blood to make money for the people that run this organisation, it is sickening to be honest.
Steve Reed, Labour candidate for Croydon North