Posted in Our heritage
My life took an interesting turn on the 13th of July, 2013. I had one of those encounters where I knew my life would change from that point on.
That was the day I was introduced to something a little ‘different’. I walked into a place where I met passionate people, many of whom had sacrificed a lot to be there. I became immediately aware those people were unified in their purpose, which was not something I had really experienced before. It was strange, but in a good way.
That was the day I walked into SU QLD to start my role as Media and Communications Officer.
SU QLD has a very clear vision in all that it does: “To see each child and young person connected and supported in community, serving others, and experiencing fullness of life”.
Here are some stats to paint a picture of exactly how that vision is being enacted:
- More than 580 chaplains currently work in more than 800 Queensland schools; available to be a listening ear and a caring voice within the school grounds.
- More than 900 At-Risk teenagers have participated in SU QLD’s program Connect since 1998. Demand is growing, with research showing: 100% of students indicate improvement in their school attendance; 90% indicate growth in self-confidence, respecting others and teamwork; and 80% indicate strong improvement in their ability to make good decisions after completing the program.
- There were 92 camping and community outreach events in 2013, involving 4,230 participants and 1,729 mostly volunteer leaders. There are already 7 confirmed new events in 2014.
- Close to 100 people qualified with their Certificate IV or Diploma in Youth Work through SU QLD Training in 2013, growing the number of people available to serve Queensland’s young generation.
This is only a small snapshot, though. With a history spanning back to the 1800s, we may never be able to grasp the full extent of SU QLD’s positive impact on our state.
But what I’m beginning to realise is that being involved in SU QLD, at this time and this place, is like creating another moment in history. No matter what your involvement is – an employee, volunteer or supporter – we are all so privileged to be somehow encouraging our state’s children and young people through one of the trickiest times in their lives.
Our work is not about pushing an agenda, but just to meet young people where they are at, whether it’s at schools, events or camps – listening to them, and letting them know that someone cares.
I’m ready to start making more history in 2014! Are you with me?