Something Quite Special

Jesus had a marked influence on those around him. He spoke and lived a winning formula – unity with his father, close relationship with his inner circle and love for all people. His impact was transformational.

While our SU representatives (staff, volunteers, supporters, donor, helpers) don’t claim to be Jesus, we do aim to be witnesses through our programs. We do this by keeping close to God, having unity in our teams and loving our participants. This Jesus winning formula is evident in our programs, and the impact that SU has is life-giving, transformational and longlasting.

Here is what one parent shared in a recent letter to our CEO: “…what moved me to write was our experience with the performing arts camp. Our youngest attended that camp this year and [my wife] and I went to the performance on the Friday night. Our child has a variety of challenges that he needs to cope with, and mum was wondering how he was going to be when we connected with him on Friday night.

He was fantastic and was clearly having a ball. [We] left the night realising that we had seen something quite special. Here was a space that had been created for a group of very eclectic, creative young people, some of whom I have no doubt don’t necessarily fit easily into the more common social moulds, and they were flourishing in that environment. They were stepping out beyond their comfort zones, they were enjoying their leaders and each other and were getting a kick out of performing. Such a space of safety and inclusion does not happen by accident and I came away recognising that I could not do that but was profoundly grateful that [SU] and [their] team there do.

Our son had an absolute ball, and I have no doubt will want to be there next year.

Many will not understand all of the challenges of leadership, coordination, energy, prayer, thought, planning and general struggle that goes on behind the scenes to enable these camps to occur. From a Dad and a Mum who do, can we say that we are very grateful for the gift that SU provides to our kids and to so many other young people across WA.”

Over the last 18 months to 2 years SU WA has embarked on a project, to gather as much feedback as we can to measure the impact our programs and ministries are having. While we do want to grow in numbers, we also want to grow in quality, influence and impact, while also getting better at journeying with people outside of our programs. We know extraordinary things happen in our SU ministries and this project provides evidence that we are on the right path. Through our ministries people come to know who Jesus is and more about him, grow in their faith, feel loved and cared for and become connected with a church or faith community all while having fun.

by Joyce Arnott