This week our Year 9 and Year 10 students will have a chance to practise the second greatest commandment ‘to love others as themselves’. The world often encourages our young people to be ‘inward looking’ and ‘me centred’ and this is at odds with the Christian message of loving others. By implementing the Slum Survivor camp in Year 9 and the Wontama Service Activity into Year 10 we are able to provide real life examples for our students to look at how others live in our society and provide them with opportunities to serve those less fortunate.
Slum Survivor — This camp is designed to help Year 9 examine the issue of homelessness in our society. In Australia over 100,000 people are homeless each night; this equates to approx 28,000 people in NSW (homelessnessaustralia.org.au). Worldwide these figures are higher with people displaced due to war, famine, disease and persecution. Through this program our students will learn about homelessness; the causes and how they can help. They will be visiting the Salvation Army to hear about some of the programs they have introduced into the Orange Community to support our local homeless population. They will also experience what it is like to survive on $5.00 a day and by camping outside on the Thursday night in their own ‘shelters’ our students come to appreciate the many blessings they have in their own lives.
Wontama Activity — Year 10 will cook, entertain and spend time with the clients from Wontama. In a society that often looks down on the elderly we want to highlight their importance and our appreciation for the contribution they have made to our community. Students have spent time over the last few weeks learning about what the world was like when our visitors were young and how they can entertain and care for them while they are here.
Sharyn Stockton — Senior School Coordinator