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12 Angus Ave
Edwardstown, SA, 5039

(08) 8378 6800

2018 Newsletter Edition 2

THE PROGRAM BUILDING BIKES AND BOYS

Kerryn Coombs

MENTORING AND SUPPORTING INDIVIDUALS AND COMMUNITIES

 above: Student Jay with Kieran Smith, Nairne Primary School Pastoral Care Worker

above: Student Jay with Kieran Smith, Nairne Primary School Pastoral Care Worker

“I live on a farm and I ride my bike a lot. I know how to fix a puncture and I’ve helped change the tyres.”  Jay, a year 7 student got involved with the ‘Bikes for Refugees’ program run by SMG Pastoral Care Worker Kieran Smith.

“The main aim of this program has been to mentor students, particularly boys who need to come out of their shell and give them something to succeed at. The students are not only challenged, they discover more about themselves,” Kieran explained.

The students learn practical skills in bike maintenance and how to respond to the challenges associated with working on old bikes. They are also learning how to look beyond the bike repairs, and see the needs of others in the community, and how their input will positively impact other young people. 

Jay enjoyed his time in the program. “I loved working on the bikes. I learned that I could wait a really long time and learn patience to finish the bike when waiting for parts to come in. Giving this bike to a refugee really makes me happy, and someone else gets to enjoy riding a bike like I do. They will know that we care about them.” 

This new program won the 2017 Premier’s Community Service Schools Award. 

Your donations and continued support of SMG’s School Chaplaincy services make it possible for young people like Jay to learn, grow and reach their full potential.

To download a copy of the current or past newsletters click here

RELATIONSHIP, COMRADERY AND BELONGING

Kerryn Coombs

CHILDREN’S CHOIR LEARNING VALUABLE LIFE LESSONS

 photo supplied

photo supplied

When SMG Pastoral Care Worker Rachel Titley started at Murray Bridge South Primary School last year, she was asked to take over the school choir “We now have a much heavier focus on relationship, comradery and belonging and the need for our kids to be captured in those spaces. The students taking part are learning how to be better team members and how to be leaders, taking turns to set up the room for practice, preparing for the session and conducting from the front with another leader.”

Krystal a year 6 student enjoys singing and performing in the choir “You get good opportunities to meet new people. I have made a couple of new friends that are not in my class, and I have learned that no one is going to judge you.”

A few weeks ago the choir performed at the Murray Bridge ANZAC day Memorial Service. Prior to the event students had the opportunity to hear stories from local veterans and ask questions, and find out if anyone from their families had served.  

They learned about the impact of war and became aware of the freedoms we experience as a result of the sacrifice of others.

Principal Stuart Kitto said “It is really important for kids to have a sense of community and the choir gives them a chance to be involved. The kids see themselves as part of something that is bigger than what they are, that they are wanted and valued, and able to contribute in a way that is accessible to them by singing in a larger group.”

Rachel explained that the choir is not just about singing and performing “these kids need spaces to belong, to be loved, to be encouraged and to be nurtured. Where they can share when there is a new baby in the family, when they lose a grandparent or pet, when they are moving house, or if they have a struggle with their sibling, parent or teacher. They need to have people invested in the journey that is their life. They know that I genuinely care about them, and that I am somebody they can come and speak to if they have any concerns, or if things are hard at school or home.”

Your gift to SMG School Chaplaincy services provides purpose, value and hope to children and young people across SA.

To download a copy of the current or past newsletters click here

HELPING BOYS JOURNEY INTO ADULTHOOD

Kerryn Coombs

NEW MENTAL HEALTH EARLY INTERVENTION PROGRAM

 above: Nick Henley, Ansvar SA/NT State Manager and Matt Crook, SMG Education Services Manager

above: Nick Henley, Ansvar SA/NT State Manager and Matt Crook, SMG Education Services Manager

Did you know that suicide is now the number one cause of death for Australian men aged between 15-44? Thanks to the generosity of a Community Education Program Grant from Ansvar Insurance, Matt Crook, SMG Education Services Manager is developing a new workshop specifically targeted at boys aged 12 to 17 called ‘Blueprint to Becoming a Man’. 

“It is our goal that this workshop will transform boys, how they feel about themselves, how they interact with and treat others, how they view, engage and treat girls and women, and how they interact with their community. This early intervention program will equip boys to better navigate their journey into manhood, providing alternative options when it is needed; and through being better equipped, we hope suicide rates will reduce.”

Warren Hutcheon, Ansvar Insurance CEO said “We are very proud of our Community Education Grant Program and inspired by the phenomenal work that this year’s seven recipients do to better the lives of Australia’s young people. Funding for non-profit organisations becomes more and more of a challenge every year, and Ansvar looks forward to watching these amazing organisations make a positive impact in so many people’s lives.”

$18,000 is still needed to present the ‘Blueprint to Becoming a Man’ workshops throughout South Australia. Your gift will have a positive life changing impact on the boys and young men who participate in this new and unique program.

SMG logo
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Life Matters logo

To download a copy of the current or past newsletters click here

Life Matters - School Seminars & Interactive Workshops

Kerryn Coombs

ENCOURAGING CHILDREN TO CARE FOR THEMSELVES AND THOSE AROUND THEM

 above: Life Matters presenter Alisi Tavui and Tom Bertram with Pt Noarlunga Primary School students Emilee, Lucy, Oliver, and Abigail

above: Life Matters presenter Alisi Tavui and Tom Bertram with Pt Noarlunga Primary School students Emilee, Lucy, Oliver, and Abigail

Life Matters seminars create spaces for children and young people to discover their story and to carefully think about the choices they make and the impact they can have on their friends, school, community and world.

After attending a Life Matters seminar at Port Noarlunga Primary School recently, Year 2 student Emilee said “we need to help people”, and Year 6 student Lucy said she was encouraged by what she heard “you should be kind to others and don’t judge them. You should invite them and ask them to play with you.” 

The Life Matters team is very thankful for your support. Your gift will make it possible for children and young people to continue to hear positive life changing messages.

To download a copy of the current or past newsletters click here

Directors Desk

Kerryn Coombs

EXPECT  THE UNEXPECTED

 ANGELA JOLLY; SMG Executive Director

ANGELA JOLLY; SMG Executive Director

Recently I have been reminded that unexpected things can and do happen.  I have just returned to work after six weeks recovering from an unforeseen major operation. My healing is going well, and I have been looking forward to coming back, but this experience highlighted that sometimes big and small things unexpectedly happen.

Most times we are prepared for the challenges we face, however when we are confronted suddenly and unexpectedly we can be shaken and become vulnerable. It’s at times like these that support is often needed, and why I am so passionate about the support we provide to children, young people, and families through our Chaplaincy and Wellbeing services to school communities. It is a privilege to journey with others when they are shaken, struggling, hurting or vulnerable.

Expecting the unexpected – we all experience this in our lives. With your partnership, we want to continue to provide welcome and unexpected help, support and pastoral care that turns something scary or negative, into an experience that is encouraging, uplifting and positive.

*STOP PRESS*

Great news! The Federal Government has announced it will extend current levels of funding for the National School Chaplaincy Program beyond 2018. It is my hope that this contribution, along with the continued gifts and support from you and many others across South Australia, will enable SMG to continue to offer Chaplaincy and Wellbeing services to children and young people across South Australia.

To download a copy of the current or past newsletters click here