Your support for SU Australia creates opportunities to partner with and through others, including local churches, to build stronger communities.
For school chaplain Mel (or Chappy Mel as she’s known), who works across two special schools in Queensland, she says helping families in her school connect and experience ‘community’ is crucial.
“The challenges faced by families in special schools are many. For parents, they have children with endless appointments and medical needs. We see families under financial strain and extreme stress. But the biggest thing I hear in my role is the isolation,” says Chappy Mel.
“They can’t always take their children out for dinner, or to church, because their children don’t fit into the programs. This is why we started ‘Champions’ Club’.”
During the pandemic, Champions’ Club was created by a passionate team of volunteers at Calvary Church on the Sunshine Coast.
Jamine, who has worked in disability-support for over 10 years, helped launch Champions’ Club with Chappy Mel. Their aim was to show kids with disabilities that God loves them.
“The ministry is overseen by professionals in the disability field. We have a 1:1 ratio with every child who attends our Sunday-morning program. Our heart is that families would find a community where they belong, because we believe church should be accessible for everyone, no matter their story.”
“Champions’ Club has impacted the culture of our whole church. It’s been wonderful having Chappy Mel because it strengthens that sense of community.”
Chaplaincy, and the SU ministries that exist across Australia, are bringing communities together, to give more opportunities for children, young people and their families to discover hope and life.
It’s a big vision, and one we cannot do alone. Through faithful supporters like you, and the churches and community organisations we work alongside, this vision is becoming a reality.