|Ministry Outreach Immersion - 27 September 2017|
During the June/July holidays, seven Year 11 students, Amy Quinn, Emily Walls, Gabrielle Simpson, Liliana Neame, Samantha Hobbs, Tegan Frail and Ruby Adams, accompanied by Sr Sally Fuller, travelled to St Scholastica's College, a Good Samaritan school in Sydney, to participate in the Good Samaritan Education Ministry Outreach program.
The girls were joined by students and teachers from eight other Good Samarian Schools around Australia. The purpose of the trip was to be of service to others by following the example expressed in the Good Samaritan story and the Benedictine values. Encouraged to live simply and selflessly, the girls gained a deeper appreciation for the hardships and issues of our world.
Each girl volunteered at various service sites throughout the week, including Allowah Children's Hospital, Streetlevel Mission, Loaves and Fishes, Foodbank, Oznam Industries and St Mary's Villa.
Emily Walls said of her experience:
One of the places I visited whilst on the immersion was Allowah Presbyterian Disabled Children's Hospital. Although the experience was quite confronting and unfamiliar, I quickly formed a connection with many of the children. It humbled me to witness their enjoyment in the simplest of activities such as blowing bubbles or shaking a maraca. A conversation with an older volunteer really resonated with me. She said, “It can only take one accident, for you to be in their same circumstance. However, will you lose your dignity? Will you lose your love?”
Although I was only at Allowah for two days, I came home with a broadened perspective of the people around me and the ability I have to make a difference in the lives of others, even from the simplest of gestures.
Tegan Frail said:
Throughout the week, I realised that more people than I thought go through the struggles of not having enough food to eat and not being employed because they have a disability. I saw the small difference we made and the impact it had on us and the people we interacted with. This experience helped me to gain an understanding of the daily struggles some people go through and it is an experience I will never forget.
We have returned with a sense of perspective and a desire to make a contribution to society, whether that be big or small, as we have learnt that help is not reliant on size and any small difference can change someone's life drastically. We have made great connections and life-long friendships with likeminded people whose attitudes contributed to an emotionally rewarding experience. We are also very grateful to have been given this wonderful opportunity and would like to thank those who worked hard to make this experience possible as this has truly enriched our lives. We are particularly indebted to Sr Sally and thank her sincerely for her wonderful care and leadership of this immersion.