At just three years of age a healthy, happy Jamil suffered a grand mal seizure and was rushed to hospital. Six months later, he was diagnosed with epilepsy.
After Jamil started school, he would be further diagnosed with a range of complex learning disorders.
The news hit Jamil’s parents Frank and Veronica hard, particularly as they watched their son struggle with basic reading and writing.
Despite the multiple diagnoses, Jamil has been blessed with a loving family and a charming personality, which has helped him settle in and make friends at school.
While glad that his son had school friends, Frank’s prayer was for his son to find Christian friends too, particularly after hearing Jamil use some eyebrow-raising language at home.
Jamil went each week to church, but was not interested and refused to attend Sunday School.
“Obviously we didn’t want to push him too much, but we always tried to encourage him to be involved,” says Frank.
Of the family’s church friends, none had children around Jamil’s age.
Thanks to amazing friends like you, Frank had an opportunity to send Jamil on an SU QLD Cluster Camp for Grade 5 and 6 children from their local area.
Frank was full of praise for the camp.
“We went and I could stay in the same cabin because of his epilepsy. The camp was absolutely fabulous.
“He loved it. I enjoyed it. I felt really blessed because he was able to experience that. We also met some children and their parents who go to our church,” he says.
After the camp, the change in Jamil was immediate and profound.
“Some of the kids from his group were from our church. So [they] came up to Jamil and said ‘Come along to Sunday School with us’… [Later] I took a look inside the doors and he was sitting with some friends and talking with them. I just felt really blessed.”
Simply from attending an SU Camp, Jamil was plugged into his local church and his social life was more active than ever.
Frank also praised the volunteer leaders at the camp for the way they treated his son, and others like him.
“You have a bunch of Christian leaders who are caring and compassionate in their understanding.
“So you form an environment where children, can grow in confidence to interact with people and express themselves…I’m just forever grateful for the camping ministry at SU QLD.”
Jamil now enjoys a healthy and positive social life because faithful supporters like you believe children and young people deserve to enjoy their youth in a safe, inclusive environment.
You can support SU QLD Camps so this life-changing work continues by visiting suqld.org.au/donate.