Taking full advantage of the crisp Autumn weather, the Cooloola Schools Chaplaincy Committee trialled a new fundraising event with a Chappy River Walk on Saturday, April 10.
Eleven chappies from this region put their heads together to organise this family-friendly event, and it was a big success!
“This year was the first time we held a fundraising event like this. In the past, our region has held dinners and trivia nights, but we thought this would be a great way to build closer relationships with churches and the local community,” says Ronnie, chaplain at Rainbow Beach State School.
“After the isolation of last year, we were hoping this would be a lovely time for connection – and it was.”
In an effort to encourage families and younger children who took part in the walk, Chappy Ronnie and some of the other chaplains came up with a unique idea.
“Bunnings kindly donated a selection of rocks for the event, so we painted about 75 ‘kindness rocks’ which were hidden along the walk for the kids to find. There were a couple of special gold-painted ones, which alludes to the history of Gympie [a gold-mining town].”
“We wrote positive messages on all the rocks – things like ‘be kind’ and ‘shine’. It’s good to be reminded to look out for one another.”
At the end of the walk, the chappies and Cooloola Chaplaincy Committee organised a celebration on the grass, complete with live music, food and face painting. It was a welcome change of pace for families and a fun way to kick off the weekend.
“Families love to walk alongside the beautiful Mary River, and this event was a really great way to raise money for chaplaincy at the same time,” said Chappy Ronnie.
“There are a lot of people in our community who are unaware what chappies do, so we wanted to raise awareness and show that we are a kind and friendly face in the community.”
For more information on what school chaplains do, head to our 2021 Chaplaincy Snapshot.