In 2007, Dawn Barrie came up with a remarkable way to help young people attend SU camps. As a youth, Dawn had been profoundly impacted on a Christian camp, and when she heard there were young people in her community who couldn’t afford to go on camp, she decided to take action.
Her solution was simple: she set up a box at the back of her church, and asked church-goers to drop in any spare 50 cent coins they may have. While the majority of the donations are coins, over the years cheques and larger donations found their way into the box.
“On average, each year we help somewhere between six to eight kids get to a SU camp. I love how seemingly worthless coins can make such a worthwhile impact,” says Dawn.
In the last fifteen years, Dawn and her church community have helped over 100 young people attend an SU camp – how amazing is that?
Tassie church inspired to help the next generation discover life
The stories you make possible through your support of SU Australia continue to inspire others across the country to help the cause. A recent example comes from Tasmania, where SU chaplain Lynesse spoke at a local Baptist church about the work, providing social, emotional and spiritual support to students, staff and families at her local school.
The congregation was so moved and inspired by the difference that school chaplains can make in our local communities, that they rallied together to donate $500 to support the local chaplaincy service.
Lynesse says, “This was a beautiful gift. The congregation’s generosity and authentic curiosity and interest in our school community was such a blessing.”
For every chaplain, youth worker and volunteer that serves in our local communities, there is an army of supporters just like you who are making their work possible. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child. Thank you for being part of our ‘village’, helping the next generation discover life, and finding their place in God’s big story.
Billie’s SU journey from the UK to Australia
Billie Patrick was born and raised in Wales, became a Christian in 1957 at 21 years of age. Little did she know, SU ministries would have such a significant impact on her life.
Although her family wasn’t thrilled by her decision to become a Christian, Billie had a friend who faithfully shared her Scripture Union Bible Notes, and it set Billie on a brand new path.
“I remember asking my friend June, who’d been praying for me to come to Christ, ‘What do I do now?’ So she passed me her SU Bible Notes, and ever since that day I’ve continued to do my daily scripture reading,” says Billie.
Over her faith journey, Billie has shown tremendous courage by following the Lord’s lead and migrating to Australia in 1959. She served as an Inter School Christian Fellowship (ICSF) Counsellor in Victoria for 13 years, and met her husband during this period.
To this day, Billie remains a faithful SU Supporter, and shows particular interest in supporting SU Chaplaincy ministries in our schools. Thank you for your faithful support, Billie!
Ros has been part of the SU family for generations – now her kids are too
Rosalind and SU have been journeying together for decades. Ros grew up attending camps in Western Australia and later transitioned into camp-leading: a role she adored for over 10 years.
“In an increasingly difficult environment, SU holds holiday camps that provide our children with the opportunity to hang out with other young Christians and explore their faith in a safe environment. These camps also give young people the chance to participate in fantastic outdoor activities such as mountain biking, paddling, rafting and sailing,” says Ros.
“As parents of two teenagers, we greatly appreciate all the work of SU in running camps for young people.”
Ros and husband Eddie are still great supporters of SU to this day!
Hannah’s SU roots are growing deep in the ACT
Hannah’s story with SU began before she was even born, with her dad serving on Beach Missions in his younger years.
It wasn’t until recently, however, that Hannah personally got involved in the work of SU – first volunteering to help out with the communications team in the ACT office, while studying at university, and then going on to take part in Beach Missions too.
“What I love about SU, and why I love supporting this work, is it’s so exciting to be part of this community. It really is like a big family. Each person is so excited about the mission and seeing kids and young people know Jesus, which is beautiful to see,” says Hannah.
In recent years, Hannah’s volunteer work with the communications team has added another dimension to her support for SU.
“SU gives young people opportunities to grow in their skills, which is what keeps me so invested in this mission. But it’s also the stories of lives impacted.
“I love hearing about the SUPA clubs in schools and the testimonies from camps and missions. They are all such a reminder to me that God is pretty cool and it’s exciting to be part of this mission and see the fruit of that work.”
Thank you Hannah for all you do to make this mission possible!
Do you have a story to share about your journey with SU? We’d love to hear from you. Email our team at firstname.lastname@example.org.