Friday, December 12, 2008

Plenty of Potential

This week we hosted 150 children and 34 leaders.

My church runs a holiday club in the first week of the December school holidays. This is a free public service to our community, which is intended to assist parents who do not know what to do with their children while they go to work. The children are with us from 8:30 – 1:00 every day and are kept occupied with songs, crafts, games and a teaching component (2008 theme was accepting one another – in the light of the Xenophobia of this year).

It is an awesome privilege to work with both the children, and the holiday club leaders. I see this as an opportunity to show love to children, many of whom come from homes where parents are stressed, or absent. It is also an opportunity to develop leadership skills. The leaders are mostly in High School, with the senior leaders being University Students.

We have done this for 31 consecutive years – and now we are getting the children of parents who themselves were in holiday club. These parents have gone on to live full and interesting lives – often in other parts of the world. And I want to believe that we have had a part in uncovering the gifts God has given them, and encouraging them to trust God’s love for themselves.

I am extremely proud of the dedication of the leaders, who run the week with no thought of their own comfort or needs. They are the heroes of this week.


digitaldion (Dion Forster) said...

Truly wonderful!

Thanks for all you do.



Murray & Gina UK said...

Aaaaah... Holiday Club at Plummies... good memories... except having to clean the hall that one year... oops

Steve Hayes said...

I was involved in organising such a thing in 1974 and 1975, but 31 consecutive years! That's mind boggling.

But yes, 1974 was a generation ago, and i have photos of some of those kids, and some of them must have kids of their own by now. Quite a thought.

bugs said...

Having been involved in many holiday clubs over the years i can only imagine the impact 31 years of holiday club has made in the community!

Arthur said...

Hey Pete! Well done to all those who served the children over the Holiday Club period.

I was one of those youngsters who spent every June holiday at PMC - since preschool I think! During high school I joined as a leader and served every year until I moved up to Joburg in 1998.

Another leader who spent many years in Holiday Club was Roy. He and I recently chatted about our experiences as teenagers and young adults in Holiday Club and remarked on how valuable the experience was in shaping our leadership ability, our organisational skills, our public speaking proficiency and so on. With up to 600 children a day, these skills were essential!!

It is interesting to note that many teachers came out of the Holiday Club at PMC - no doubt due to the fabulous training received and the experience given in working with children.

I carry many fond memories of Holiday Club. My only regret, shared by many who served with me, is that we did not develop a "pass-the-torch" mentality to the upcoming leaders who would eventually take over from us. However, I am certain that the current group of leaders is doing a stirling job at reaching out to the Plumstead community and making a difference in many lives!

Congratulations to all concerned!