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26 December 2017
Some 810 delegates and an array of national and international speakers gathered at the MCG in August 2018 to take part in Australia’s first national housing conference in four years.
On Wednesday morning, 5 September, The Salvation Army’s Melbourne 614 launched a report on its Concierge program and Lord Mayor Sally Capp officially opened a new community hub, that is supported by police, ambulance and paramedic personnel.
The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory’s inaugural Doorways Coordinator, Pamela Hanney (2011-2018), retired recently. Here she reflects on her journey with the Salvos’ staff and clients.
Retired Doorways Coordinator Pamela Hanney looks to the future of Salvation Army services and clients.
Jesus Christ once said about himself, to a would-be follower, that ‘the birds have nests and the foxes have holes, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head’ (Matthew 8:20). Jesus knew what it was to be homeless. Having somewhere to rest your head is something that many of us take for granted.
‘I know the Salvos Hawks aren’t just about winning, but also about what you do and how you do it. People were coming up to their teammates and opponents and asking, “Are you okay?”’
Fullife Foundation raises money, primarily in the pharmacy industry here in Australia, which enables the foundation’s work ‘funding charities on the ground,’ Ian explains. ‘We work with World Vision, Birthing Kits Foundation Australia and, most recently, International Needs Australia.’
Ian says that, as the fullife foundation has grown and expanded its work, God has put people in the right spot at the right time. Salvo Ian Shanks’ life is both hectic and rewarding. He believes that God has used his friends to support and expand the foundation’s efforts.
Click here to find out how networking helped Salvo Ian Shanks and his fullife foundation raise and distribute more than $1 million in a few years, to save lives and improve their quality of life. [link to: fullife cleaned 2.docx]
The fullife foundation has provided health, pre- and postnatal care in Ethiopia, as well as immunisation and family planning services, and can accommodate up to three women delivering at once. This doesn’t sound remarkable in an Australian setting, or any generalised, Western context. But it is new where it is happening, and it is beautiful. This is happening in a country where the vast, vast majority of pregnant women receive no such aid.
Salvation Army worker Simon Chung talks about the training and support of 614 concierges. The concierges play a supportive role through the week at Melbourne Project 614. They meet with staff and owners from neighbouring businesses, they talk with homeless people, encouraging them to access support services, and they help keep the place clean and safe.
What is life like for Melbourne project 614’s concierges? We ask two of them.
Major Brendan Nottle, corps officer of Melbourne Project 614, 69 Bourke Street, Melbourne, says the Concierge program (employing formerly homeless people to help homeless people) has moved past the pilot stage.
The Salvation Army’s Asylum Seeker and Refugee Service at Tinning Street, Brunswick (Vic.), assists men, women and children who live on hope and precious little else.
For more than five years, Sophie* has been in Australia, having fled from her homeland in fear for her life. She has been here, in Australia, on a bridging visa waiting to have her request for asylum granted or denied for all those years. Sophie is one of the people who faces imminent poverty because of the withdrawal of money from people seeking asylum here in Australia.
* Not her real name.
Lauren Eudey takes school students through the choices and hazards homeless people face; they then workshop different strategies. (Asking themselves questions such as, Do I pay for accommodation with the bit of money I have, or do I risk sleeping on the streets? Do I buy food, or use money for clothing or transportation to seek help?)
Mornington Secondary College teacher Courteney Boulter says the trip to hear school development manager, Lauren Eudey and her team ‘is a regular excursion… I love these workshops. The biggest impression they make on our kids is from hearing the stories about individuals that the Salvos have helped along the way.
Writing tenders and developing resources for The Salvation Army’s Tasmania Division for 15 years allowed Nell Kuilenburg to unleash programs of innovation and creativity, which have had a positive impact across Australia and beyond. Nell has recently decided to take a redundancy, leaving full-time employment with The Salvation Army. Her (partial) story follows.
Trying to protect women and children; Nell Kuilenburg reflects on the journey and the growth of Safe From The Start.
Nell Kuilenburg discusses how we can best respond to Family and Domestic Violence
With 44,000 young Australians sleeping rough, and the homeless ‘count’ up 14% in the past five years, e-connect talks to Salvation Army workers Tatiana Croft and Trish Kelly about the reasons why and the ways to resolve youth homelessness.
e-connect: There are thousands of young people in Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula, and there is no crisis facility; there are only 13 transitional beds for homeless kids in Frankston, and there are long waiting lists… we need to distinguish between crisis accommodation and transitional accommodation, don’t we?
May 2018 marks 40 years of operation for the Army’s Tranmere Street youth refuge.
Major David Eldridge AM, who founded the refuge with Major Graeme McClimont, told Others magazine that ‘back then, nobody knew about homeless youth as an issue’.
On her way to meet with e-connect, on a warm Friday morning, Salvation Army officer Captain Sarah Eldridge spent 10 minutes helping remove a young man from the middle of Lennox Street, Richmond. It’s a busy thoroughfare. The pedestrian, high and incoherent, was in imminent danger of being run over
For those not in the know, Yves Saint Laurent (YSL) are high end creators of fragrances, skincare, make-up, lipsticks and cosmetics, women’s handbags, leather goods, etc. For Helen Kontis, of Good360, there is a joy – an emotional resonance – in seeing such expensive YSL products being given gratis to pensioners, survivors of Family and Domestic Violence, and refugees.
Salvation Army chaplaincy event keynote speaker Rabbi Gabbi Sar-Shalom is the pastoral care coordinator of Melbourne’s Caulfield Hospital
e-connect talks with the four mission department heads, Major Jenny Begent (head of social mission), Captain Stuart Glover (head of community engagement), Dr Elli McGavin (head of policy, research and social justice) and Captain Steven Smith (head of mission resources).
There is a pool of money and staffing that is reserved by The Salvation Army for contracted, social endeavours. There are other financial resources and other personnel that are internally funded for Salvation Army corps, to use in their evangelical pursuits. And there is an overarching, holistic, all of life mission; one that acts accountably concerning its fiscal requirements and still acts to try to help meet the physical, spiritual, societal and emotional needs of those people whom it serves.
Seeking to change the world, one person at a time, is not without its complications and risks.
Recently, police officers brought two 10-year old boys to the Salvos at 69 Bourke Street in Melbourne at 1 a.m. The boys, from Warragul (some 105 km to the south-east), had missed the last train back. Safe accommodation was provided and the police were able to contact family members and get the boys home safely the next day. That same weekend, a man from Bendigo was physically assaulted in the wee small hours, in Melbourne’s CBD. He received support, compassion and counselling from the Project 614 crew, who encouraged him to call his wife and make his way home the next day.
e-connect talks with the four mission department heads, Major Jenny Begent (head of social mission), Captain Stuart Glover (head of community engagement), Dr Elli McGavin (head of policy, research and social justice) and Captain Steven Smith (head of mission resources).
Consider the 19th century nationalism and optimism of The Salvation Army’s birth; the harrowing rigours and conflicts of 20th century realpolitik, through which we expanded; and the 21st century organisational genome of evidence-based practice, multiculturalism and ecumenism that begs the questions as to our capacity for growth and service, and our sense of self.
This article notes that The Salvation Army exists to love God and love others, by responding to people’s pain, grief, and loneliness; getting them fed, housed, clothed, trained or educated; see they’re treated by doctors or seen by counsellors; helping them secure a job, find a relative, or make a friend; protecting them from violence and sadism; and aiding their search for spiritual and physical salvation.
Salvation Army officer Captain Troy Pittaway has publicly defended the vast majority of Sudanese Australians, who have recently been vilified by some politicians and media commentators. The captain notes in an nationally published online article that he has ‘been working and living with and studying Sudanese youth for over eight years and in this time, I have never encountered anything like the gangs of youths that are being talked about’.
Reports of increases in Family and Domestic Violence (FDV) in the East Kimberley since the introduction of the cashless welfare card have again raised concerns on the mandatory use of the cards.
Salvation Army staff Tatiana Croft and Trish Kelly spoke at a Frankston-Mornington Peninsula youth homelessness summit convened on 21 November at the Frankston Football Club (Vic.).
It is almost Christmas; click here for Christmas cards, design and resources etc
No community or faith or culture or creed is impervious to the societal pressures that lead to Family and Domestic Violence. The Salvation Army supports White Ribbon Day’s call for respect and safety for all women and children, and for all people.
‘People are social, emotional, intellectual and spiritual beings.’
Those words affirming The Salvation’s Army’s holistic theology and integrated practice framework, from national secretary for mission Colonel Lyn Edge, set the tone for the national mission conference from 8-10 November at the Gold Coast’s Crowne Plaza. One hundred delegates, officers and employees, gathered from all Australian states and territories to attend and participate.
A moving welcome to country ceremony and the symbolic giving of eucalyptus gum leaves, the playing of engaging and appropriately diverse music, and the speaking of honest, inspiring words were the highlights of the first Diversity conference event; a dinner held at Melbourne Project 614 at 69 Bourke Street in Melbourne on Wednesday evening, 25 October.
A third annual national ecumenical justice conference was held in Melbourne on Friday, Saturday, 27, 28 October 2017, and attended by approximately 1,000 people.
The Salvation Army’s annual Christmas concerts, ‘Our Christmas Gift 2017’, will be held Hamer Hall in Arts centre Melbourne at 3 p.m. and 7.30 p.m. on Saturday, 2 December The event will also be livestreamed from some Salvation Army churches.
On Monday, 16 October, 40 days and 703 km later, Brendan reached Canberra. He had spoken to thousands of Australians, helped raise more than $123,000, gathered more than 9,340 signatures on a homelessness petition he presented to government. The major’s long walk and brisk swim across the Murray River also received more 400 media hits across Australia, estimated to be worth more than $2 million, which reached 20 million Australians with his call for a national, bipartisan policy to eliminate homelessness.
How Captain Jason Davies-Kildea, the Salvos’ latest doctor of philosophy, came to know God through The Salvation Army
Across Australia and the world, Salvation Army workers and officers joined colleagues in hosting observances of the 17th annual international Overdose Awareness Day. The occasion allows bereaved family and friends to gather and mourn their loss, and commemorate the lives of those people who have died or suffered serious injuries after overdosing on legal and illegal substances.
The Salvation Army is grateful for its continuing partnership with Good360 Australia; a body that helps it help others.
Major Brendan Nottle is putting his feet where his heart is and walking from Melbourne to Canberra –through September and into October – to plead the cause of homeless Australians.
e-connect spoke to Colonel Geanette Seymour: e-connect: How important is the work of The Salvation Army's social programs and services to our clients, to The Salvation Army, and to God ?
Colonel Geanette Seymour: The Salvation Army is called into being to engage in a social gospel (good news). The community of The Salvation Army, whatever form it takes, must reflect that essence in engagement in relationships that affirm worth and give value; that see the ‘other’ as made in the image of Christ.
Are there particular practical tasks that you’ve said you’ll undertake?
Colonel Geanette Seymour: Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge has said to me that I will look after what’s labelled ‘social’, from a national perspective. It’s an area I have some awareness of and experience in. It’s where I find a degree of personal confidence and excitement and enjoyment. So, Lyn’s role for me in this interim period is to look after the social programs of The Salvation Army in Australia, in the remainder of this period and also heading into the future.
The bigger issue is the ‘why’ –Why is that The Salvation Army’s task? I can go for the meta-data and I can go for the big picture, and also I have to be systemic and strategic. In real terms, we have limited resources. So, where can we apply them to achieve the nest outcomes? And who are going to be my partners, in the applying of that? What is it that I want to achieve, and also importantly, how am I going to go about that?
New national secretary for mission Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge has a message for Salvation Army employees facing the next chapter of Australia One: ‘We need to keep our eye on the big picture.
e-connect talks spiritualty with Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge: ‘I was a social worker, at the time, working in a movement where very few members were social workers and Salvation Army officers. I thought that was a call on my life; to be available to God in that way. For me it was a response, to be a good steward.’
Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge suggests the most pressing needs of Australians: ‘Community, a sense of belong, and of place
Karen (not her real name) is in her 50s and lives in the north-western suburbs of a capital city. Karen’s ex-partner had been making life hell for her and the kids; breaching his intervention order multiple times and harassing her. Before they’d separated he had sexually assaulted her, strangled her and threatened to kill himself, Karen and her children
Safer in the Home program manager Mariese Davey says the program ‘is for women who have experienced Family and Domestic Violence,
Extended celebrations and encouragement marked the 152nd anniversary of Founders’ Day, on 2 July, 2017, at Melbourne Project 614 at 69 Bourke Street, Melbourne.
National training principal Major Gregory Morgan* says that ‘when it comes to “faith and works” – the spiritual and material aspects of life – we need “both/and”, rather than “either/or”. There has been a long battle within the church; The Salvation Army chooses not to adopt a narrow, dualistic focus on eternal salvation, but to worship God who displays an all-embracing love of all creation, both now in this life and outside of the notion of time.
Major Gregory Morgan* says ‘life is best lived in relationship. We note from a growing body of research that emerging generations find their sense of meaning in the “everyday”. Social connections and relationships provide a key place to find such meaning. As Jesus said, the kingdom of God is among us.
Last month, Aboriginal Salvationist Brooke Prentis spoke to Salvationist personnel in the Melbourne THQ chapel on the prospect of constitutional recognition of the first peoples of this country through a future referendum.
As of 1 May 2017, the ‘Safer in the Home’* program (operating since September 2016) has helped more than 130 women and their children who are assessed to be at lesser risk of Family and Domestic Violence (FDV). Funded by a federal grant of $2.81 million over a three-year period, Safer in the Home is a national program solely brokered by The Salvation Army and implemented by a private security firm, Protective Group
The Salvation Army has joined in partnership with ACT Alliance (‘Action by Churches Together’) on a global level.
Melbourne Project 614, at 69 Bourke Street, Melbourne, is hosting a mission extravaganza on The Salvation Army’s Founders’ Day, from 3 p.m. on Sunday, 2 July
Wayne Collyer is one of the young men and women about to head off to the UK as part of The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory’s 35-person youth band. He is the band's manager, and plays euphonium and piano in the band.
Having sought asylum in Australia, Hamid and A'idah* attend a Salvation Army corps (church) each week. That’s not to say that their story comes to a neat resolution without difficulties. The family still awaits the processing of their claim for asylum. Hamid and A'idah are struggling with serious health issues, and have barely enough to live on.
Years passed. Father, mother and son lived their lives and secretly practised their faith. They were held, increasingly, under suspicion… when wife and mother A'idah* is arrested, husband Hamid and son Dalir flee to Jakarta to meet with a people smuggler.
When a father changes his religion, and his wife and child follow suit, the possible penalty for that decision is death…It was not a safe or easy decision. e-connect talks with a family seeking asylum in Australia, where they fled in fear of their lives.
It’s a Wednesday morning and the Salvos’ Thornbury Corps is rocking.
There are nine buses outside in the car park and on the street. Inside, funky dance moves and hugs occur under laser lights and smoke machines.
Everywhere you look and listen there is happiness. Congas and drums are beaten, tambourines and maracas are shaken, rock gods sing, air guitarists thrash the ether and wheelchair dancers put their able-bodied friends to shame.
There’s a garden swell, to touch and smell. There’s vegies to eat, and swings as well. Open wide, come inside – it’s Kingston Gardens. On Wednesday, 23 July the corps opened the ‘Dingley Village Sensory Garden and Play Area’
The annual national Missing Persons Week from 3-9 August (commenced in 1997), coordinated by the National Missing Persons Coordination Centre (NMPCC) through the Australian Federal Police with the support of state and territory police forces, ‘aims to raise awareness of the significant issues associated with missing persons, and to reduce the incidence and impact of missing persons’.
‘Why, on a Sunday night, are we sitting under a bridge?’ The question was aptly put by Major Brendan Nottle * to approximately 50 Salvationists, Salvation Army employees and clients, as they sat in a public park at 9 p.m. under the Bolte Bridge.
The Salvation Army, through its Safe from the Start program and in partnership with the University of Tasmania (UTAS), will put a federal grant to use in funding ‘an action research project to develop a Family and Domestic Violence training module specifically for men.
The Australia Southern territorial social programme department congratulates Major Jim Weymouth, who retired during a well-attended, cordial ceremony at the Catherine Booth College on 10 January. Major Weymouth was instrumental in helping to shape the territorial redevelopment of the training and educational processes.
The premiere of Westcare’s 2016 ‘Going Places Creating Memories’ movie was held on 16 November at the Sun Theatre in Yarraville (Vic.).
e-connect talks to Thanh Truong, who shared his experiences in foster care provided through The Salvation Army's Westcare Child and Adolescent Services (Vic.), at the Victoria State Social Command's inaugural annual report launch.
Hundreds of people attended The Victoria State Social Command’s inaugural annual report, launched on 21 October at the Substation in Newport (Melbourne). The event included a presentation from former Victorian deputy premier and attorney-general Rob Hulls.
The Salvation Army will join forces with many churches, NGOs and community groups on 25 November to participate in White Ribbon Day events and marches. White Ribbon Day is an annual international reminder that societies can raise awareness of and prevent family and domestic violence, through education, conversation and cultural change.
From 5-9 p.m. on Sunday, 11 December, at the Meat Market (5 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne), the Australia Southern Territory’s second festival of mission will take place.
The Salvation Army, as part of the Christian church and one of the largest faith-based NGOs in Australia, supports the annual Ant-Poverty Week (from 16-22 October), with its goals of raising awareness, promoting equity and providing opportunities for all Australians.
e-connect talks with Jenny Stanger, a Sydney-based exponent of Freedom Partnership to End Modern Slavery, who conducted training for The Salvation Army in Melbourne last month.
The Salvation Army’s tri-territorial family tracing* conference will be held in October 2014, at The Salvation Army’s Geelong Conference Centre. Some 25 delegates are due to attend, from New Zealand and Australia.
Six of the eight Salvation Army AOD (alcohol and other drugs) non-residential tenders for the Victorian government are now in the establishment phase, starting 1 September. This applies across the Army’s four Victorian divisions.
Vince and Enid Ross, retired pastor Denis and Maureen Atkinson, territorial commander Commissioner Floyd Tidd and territorial cross cultural and indigenous ministries consultant Major Pam Marshall were guiding voices at the THQ chapel on Thursday, 29 May, when the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags were blessed and accepted for use in the headquarters foyer, alongside the national and the Salvation Army flags.
Melbourne Corps 614 has entered a new partnership with Smiles Solutions dentistry, with the support of David Emerson from the Collingwood Football Club who brokered the relationship and is a strong supporter of Magpie Nest housing.
The Salvation Army Australia Eastern Territory (Qld, NSW and the ACT) invites coffee lovers and social justice advocates to support Salvos Coffee. Salvos Coffee is a social enterprise that has operated in Papua New Guinea’s Eastern Highlands for more than seven years; the proceeds of every bag sold goes directly into the Salvos Coffee program, providing ‘support services for remote, marginalised coffee growers and their families.
Some 20 people, comprising social workers, chaplains and officers, attended a training course on 3 April on engaging with intersex people. Read the article...
The world is not what it should be, nor what it could be. Want to help change that?
Jenny Stanger from the Australia Eastern Territory (AET) will be conducting an all-day anti-human trafficking training event at The Salvation Army’s Melbourne headquarters on 25 June.
The Australia Southern Territory’s social justice conference occurred last month (17,18 March) at THQ, with delegates including divisional social justice representatives, divisional and territorial staff, social justice representatives from the Australia Eastern Territory, and the national secretary, Major Kelvin Alley.
Jenny Stanger, supervisor of the Australia Eastern Territory’s Safe House for Trafficked Persons, has communicated the availability of a ‘Salvos Trafficking and Slavery Safe House newsletter’, which aims to help people ‘take action to end modern slavery’.
When did you first come in contact with TSA? The end of 2014. I was experiencing domestic violence with the children, so I went to the housing commission to get emergency housing and they talked about going to The Salvation Army. It was Christmas; a pretty full-on time to get housing; a lot of places have shut down.
More than 20 delegates gathered for part or the whole of the Australia Southern Territory’s 2016 social programme secretaries conference at Catherine Booth College in Ringwood (Vic.), from 8-10 August 2016.
The Northern Territory has the highest percentage of homelessness in the nation, and the least resources to deal with the crisis. All names have been changed to protect people’s identities and respect their privacy. Stories have been structurally edited for spatial reasons. Interviews by Katherine Goswell
The annual international overdose awareness day on 31 August gives us the opportunity to ‘raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death. It also acknowledges the grief felt by families and friends remembering those who have met with death or permanent injury as a result of drug overdose.’
e-connect talks to Lieut-Colonel Merrett about her views on rainbow accreditation, inclusion and mission.
e-connect talks to Australia Southern territorial secretary for programme Lieut-Colonel Winsome about core mission and the kind of leadership she seeks to model and provide, coming from a divisional commander’s role.
e-connect talks to Lieut-Colonel Winsome Merrett as she commences in her new role as Australia Southern territorial secretary for programme.
Late last month The Salvation Army launched a joint research project (with the University of Tasmania) into ‘Increasing men's awareness of the effects on children exposed to family and domestic violence’. Guests included the Governor of Tasmania, the Hon. Kate Warner AM, the state’s children's commissioner, Mark Morrissey, the Canadian founder of the ‘Caring Dads’ program, Professor Katreena Scott, and researcher Dr Peter Lucas.
So, do you want the full story? For the last five years, from 2010, I have suffered from domestic violence.
I’ve been back here living with the Salvos now for about a week and a half. I was here last year with my partner, who is now my ex-partner. We stayed here for about four months and we got a private rental around the corner. After we broke up, we tried to live together but we couldn’t do it. It got too hard.
I’ve been with the Salvos for six months. I was living with family: with Mum and her brother, my uncle. It wasn’t very pretty. My uncle verbally abused me and stuff like that, and I just couldn’t handle it anymore.
A financial self-help tools webpage has been developed by the territory, as a joint initiative of The Salvation Army Doorways and Westpac. Targeted to support people who may be in the early phase of financial difficulty and have the capacity to ‘self-help’. Go to Salvationarmy.org.au/financial-tools
I’ve known the Salvos since the beginning. In 2010 I left home; I was 10. I chose to leave by myself. Mum was on marijuana, drinking, smoking, and not feeding us four kids
I started spending lots of time in the library; sometimes I’d sleep there, sometimes in the car, and couch surf from friend to friend. Read Asma and Abdi's story.
The Salvation Army is running its second student film competition. The ‘Hidden Others’ film competition, exploring the causes and hidden nature of youth homelessness in Australia, is open to 12-18 year-old young people in Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania.
Kitchen staff from the Grand Hyatt Melbourne joined executive chef Jason Camillo to teach a cuisine masterclass to former homeless people now housed at the Magpie Nest program, who cooked up a storm at The Salvation Army’s Melbourne Project 614 on 22 March.
Australia Southern territorial social justice coordinator Major Sandra Crowden reports that a Salvation Army Corps in Victoria will offer sanctuary (accommodation, counselling and practical support) to asylum seekers as required and possible.
Mark your calendar for a list of useful event dates coming up
Newly-appointed assistant territorial social programme secretary Major Andrew Craib is keen to get into the year and his new responsibilities.
On Friday, 4 February, territorial leaders Commissioners Floyd and Tracey Tidd installed the dedicated Victoria’s State Social Command (SSC) officers. Majors Michael and Annette Coleman were joined on the solemn occasion by Majors Jenny Begent, Tracey English, Eddy Holman, Alan Meredith and Alan Milkins, and Captains Claire Emerton and Ken Smith.
On Friday, 29 January, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull launched a new website for homeless Australians. The launch was hosted by The Salvation Army at Melbourne Project 614 at 69 Bourke Street.
We asked some White Ribbon Day marchers, ‘Why are you here today?’
e-connect looks at the scope of current Salvation Army mission in the Australia Southern Territory.
Any discussion of Salvation Army social work/community engagement includes the following aspects, as The Salvation Army – a part of the Christian church – is an international movement and NGO. Organisationally we facilitate the sponsorship of hundreds of children and institutions in numerous countries throughout the world; the Australian sponsors provide funds that pay for food, clean water/wells, clothing, accommodation, medical care, education, spiritual guidance etc.
In an action mirrored across the country and the world, hundreds of men and women gathered in Melbourne’s Federation Square on White Ribbon Day, 25 November. They gathered together to march, protesting against the abuse of power that characterises Family and Domestic Violence.
Feeding, clothing, housing, advocating, counselling, advising, preaching, renovating, providing, sponsoring, panel beating – these were a few of the faces of mission evident on Sunday, 29 November, as approximately 300 people gathered in a Kensington industrial estate/art gallery to celebrate the Australia Southern Territory’s inaugural ‘Festival of Mission’.
Approximately 100 people gathered at Melbourne 614 (69 Bourke Street) on 5,6 November, for the Melbourne Central Division’s ‘first and last’ social program conference, entitled ‘Theory of Change – People, Practice and Program’.
December 2015 marks the retirement of Ingle Farm Corps’ Alan Steven, who served as the director of the corps’ extensive social programs for 19 years.
Throughout the world there are more than 180 international airports and, as mentioned in the first article, the flight from Melbourne to Sydney is billed as the third-busiest passenger ‘commute’ in the world.
When e-connect caught up with Winton he was just back from a five-day multi-faith IACAC* conference in ‘Noo Yawk’, where he’d caught up with 75 of his 350 fellow airport chaplains from around the globe.
Netty Horton delivered the Australia Southern Territory’s annual James Barker Oration on Monday, 17 August 2015. ‘Last year I visited every one of our divisions, or regions, and met with our major social program providers. The key issue identified by each director, regardless of program, was access to accommodation. Imagine if we were in a position to provide people with housing that could be afforded. ..’
Major Winton Knop in his appointment as an airport chaplain at Tullamarine, north of Melbourne, clocks up approximately 12 km a day at Melbourne Airport.
As Christmas approaches, demonstrably the busiest time of the year for travellers, e-connect asked Winton about the irony of immense stress being experienced by many people as they engage in the pleasurable act of taking a holiday.
Lieut Sarah Eldridge and her worker, Eliza (nicknamed ‘Do a lot’) Owen, are crucial figures for the youth of Healesville. As the bushfire season lurches into focus, Sarah explains, ‘even for kids who didn’t lose someone in the fires, there is vicarious trauma.
‘A lot of those we work with were eight or nine years old when the fires hit in 2009. Now, when a hot day hits us, and the winds blow, Healesville becomes a ghost town – they get out of the place.’
As you drive into Healesville you may notice a few things that prompt concerns. Near a turn off for Kinglake, the ‘Welcome to Healesville’ sign is choked with grass and weeds. The blue sky’s dispensing a strong, glorious dose of sunshine. It’s the beginning of a bushfire season that has pundits worried already, yet the nearest fire threat level signage is at Coldstream.
Major Christine Pickens has conducted Positive Lifestyle Program (PLP) training in Seoul, South Korea. The major said the cultural and linguistic barriers were surmountable, especially with the help of a translator. ‘I can talk very fast,’ she said, ‘so I had to slow down my training delivery.
The Salvation Army’s Melbourne Project 614 has been in partnership with SOS Health Foundation (the charitable arm of the Back in Motion Physiotherapy organisation) since August 2013.
Approximately 150 people gathered at The Salvation Army’s Northside Corps and Community Centre, Vic. (Major Gloria Eldridge), on Friday, 16 October 2015 to welcome the Governor-General of Australia and talk about ways and means of addressing and eliminating poverty.
The anti-poverty week event gave ‘the Salvos’ the chance to thank community partners who help care for the families of Corio, one of Victoria's poorest postcodes.
Netty Horton delivered the Australia Southern Territory’s annual James Barker Oration on Monday, 17 August 2015. At the time I started in the sector, the popular community view was that homelessness was the fault of the individual. The perception was that it was almost always an older single man who was an alcoholic, and that, often, people chose homelessness because they liked to live like that.
This report from Envoy Warwick Wilson details assistance rendered to others in emergencies and crises in 2014/2015.
Netty Horton delivered the Australia Southern Territory’s annual James Barker Oration on Monday, 17 August 2015. Over the years there have been government and community interest in homelessness, to greater or lesser degrees. I have personally served on numerous homelessness advisory committees, and chaired the development of a state-based homelessness strategy.
Salvation Army Housing and Salvation Army Housing Victoria CEO Mark Dall has welcomed the release of the latest research from the federal government’s Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
Poverty is obvious; we ‘read’ the signs of poverty in people’s appearance, their state of health, their presence. On our TV screens, poverty is embodied by malnourished children and windswept refugees fleeing warzones.
Netty Horton* delivered the Australia Southern Territory’s annual James Barker Oration on Monday, 17 August 2015.
So I found myself with a working holiday visa, for up to 12 months. I had a backpack, some dollars to keep me going, and enormous enthusiasm!
Netty Horton delivered the Australia Southern Territory’s annual James Barker Oration on Monday, 17 August 2015. We will reproduce it gradually via e-connect.
Lieut Ben Clapton has become the second Salvation Army officer to be arrested as a member of the ongoing Loves Makes A Way interchurch protest against the cruelty and neglect experienced by asylum seekers, refugees and their children in offshore detention facilities administered by Australia.
A group of six protestors, Christian members of the Love Makes A Way protest, camped out in a senator’s office in the middle of the day, on 25 August.
Majors Anne Farquharson and Beth Roberts on their way, respectively, to retirement from active officership, and the next appointment – have been granted permission to work together as part of a succession planning process for Anne’s role as territorial chaplaincy coordinator.
A second Salvation Army officer has been arrested in a ‘Love Makes A Way’ inter-church protest against the neglect and abuse of refugees and asylum seekers, especially those children who are detained indefinitely offshore.
e-connect speaks to Karen Hagen, manager of The Salvation Army’s Crossroads Family Violence Services (Family Violence, Support and Accommodation) in the Melbourne Central Division (one of 10 programs and services throughout the Australia Southern Territory).
The Salvation Army Crisis Services in St Kilda is proud to note the success to date of ‘Integrated Response Team – Taskforce Alexis: Key Worker Initiative’.
For The Salvation Army, a church with social programs that often contracts to perform social services for governments, the balancing of compassion and contractual obligations can be challenging, and in no sector is that more demonstrably true than in housing.
New Salvation Army Housing CEO Mark Dall looks back. "I have increasingly been drawn to the not for profit sector. So it was with pleasure to be alerted to the housing role for the Salvos, which was advertised on an ethical jobs worksite."
The National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week 2015, from 5-12 July, gives Australians the opportunity to educate themselves about our nation's debt to indigenous Australians and work towards a full and lasting reconciliation. The week is billed as 'a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community'.
Salvation Army Housing Victoria has commenced operations. The new body Salvation Army Housing, which includes Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania, will commence in the next few months.
The Salvation Army’s Australia Southern Territory has been successful in gaining federal funding, to help ice users, in two separate consortia arrangements.
As people across Australia plan their preparations to hold events on White Ribbon Night (25 July), this in-depth reportage on the impact of family and domestic violence has been made available. The Salvation Army is a large provider of FDV support service throughout Australia.
Former professional rugby league player, Brisbane Broncos’ Nick Kenny*, left Darwin on his bicycle on 1 June; he plans to reach Adelaide on 10 July. The 3,000 km trek is part of Project Futures’ ‘Stella Fella’ campaign that raises money and awareness of the realities that face trafficked people.
The Salvation Army is pleased to have the assistance of Piper Alderman; this Melbourne law firm is providing substantial pro bono support to Salvation Army clients at Melbourne 614 Corps.
Pastor Eugene Cho* was a guest at the Justice Conference held in Melbourne on 17,18 April, convened by TEAR Australia and attended by 500 people.
As part of the 2015 Fairtrade campaign for consumers to purchase Fairtrade chocolate, Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand chose to build their campaign around Mary Appiah, a 61-year-old cocoa farmer from Ghana, who appeared last month.
A company named ‘Dineamic Food’ has made an initial donation of 80 meals (worth several hundreds of dollars) to The Salvation Army’s Melbourne Project 614 to feed the 70 residents of the Magpie Nest, with the possibility of ongoing donations.
The Salvation Army Asylum Seeker and Refugee Services has reported on its Emergency Relief and Community Development work (July-December 2014), through the agency of two part-time staff, two Salvation Army officers working on a full-time capacity and 20 volunteers.
Speaking of social justice, one young man, the honourable Captain Craig Farrell, chose to join in a civil disobedience action with other Christians through the ongoing Love Makes a Way campaign, and duly got himself arrested... In terms of this country’s treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, I think everyone’s aware that Australia has slowly been going down a road of degeneration. We are not doing well. It affects us all, and unless we find a voice and speak out we will stand guilty and complicit.
In terms of your tenure, what have been the highlights? Harmony Day last year… I went to Carrum Downs for a book launch. Captain Gen Peterson, my predecessor in the social justice role and the book was Captain Rachael Castle’s third children’s book on social justice issues, Jemima’s Lullaby. By combining the launch with that setting, with the Harmony Day celebration, we were able to mix with diverse people from the community and recognise the significance of ‘local’, neighbourhood connections.
Barry Gittins spoke to Major Marion Weymouth on 9 January 2015 about her tenure as territorial social justice secretary; her lessons, her liaisons and her legacy.
The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory’s* ‘10,000 Meals’ social media campaign for 2015 raised funding for 7,823 meals, to be provided throughout the territory.
Barry Gittins spoke to Major Sandy Crowden on 21 January, 2015, four days into her new roles as the territory’s social justice secretary and Indigenous and multicultural ministries consultant.
An Australia Southern territorial non-residential chaplaincy conference will take place on 11,12 May 2015, at the Catherine Booth College in Ringwood (Vic.).
The Australia Southern Territory has supported emergency services personnel and communities impacted by bushfires, with 11,000 meals provided over a five-day period.
National Hope for Life suicide prevention and postvention work launched a community-based local action community development initiative in Auburn, NSW (now available online) and is in the initial planning stages for a similar project in Morwell, Vic.
In late October a well-attended forum on rooming houses was held at the City of Greater Dandenong’s council chambers.
Across the nation, Salvation Army officers, employees and volunteers are selecting and wrapping presents for children whose parents cannot be there with them at Christmastime – the estimated 34,000 full-time prisoners incarcerated in Australia’s jails.*
Ann Sathasivam reflects on a Melbourne march to protest family and domestic violence. Breaking the silence around this issue is imperative. Intergenerational change will only come as more men role model behaviour that respects the rights of women.
A longstanding campaign, the Wishing Tree gives shoppers the opportunity to donate toys for marginalised families who would otherwise have nothing to give their kids on Christmas Day.
People matter. Practical, dignified support makes a difference. Lives enhanced are lives to be cherished. It’s our starting point. We know we make a difference when we see hopes realised, people empowered, and communities sticking up for those doing it the hardest.
A reflection by Major Marion Weymouth (territorial social justice secretary) and Ann Sathasivam (community organiser coordinator, The Freedom Partnership – to End Modern Slavery) after attending a screening of the 2009 documentary Playground.
The ‘HeForShe’ has started a year-long international campaign to mobilise ‘one billion men and boys as advocates and agents of change in ending the persisting inequalities faced by women and girls globally’.
Throughout October and November, young and ‘old’ people have been playing table tennis to raise awareness of and funds for advocacy and work against ‘trafficking and sexual exploitation’.
The not-for-profit Victoria Law Foundation has launched a new website called Everyday-Law. The site is designed to help members of the public find free legal information and services.
In 2013, 311 people undertook a Positive Lifestyle Program (PLP) course in the Australia Southern Territory. PLP coordinator/trainer Major Christine Pickens shares some good news about helping others.
Dr Erica Bell, who has had a long and valuable research association with The Salvation Army, has died suddenly at the age of 52, following a brain haemorrhage and a coma. eConnect pays homage to Dr Erica Bell, a talented, respected woman who helped many people.
On 11 September, Australia’s most multicultural community, Auburn, NSW, united to stand against suicide. More than 200 people, representing the suburb’s 160 nationalities, participated in a candlelight walk from Auburn Public School to Auburn Central forecourt, where they joined forces with hundreds more.
Peter Balmer has joined the social programme and policy development team in the territorial social programme department.
Territorial social justice secretary Major Marion Weymouth led a Just Salvos volunteer team at Melbourne’s Sexpo convention to ‘raise awareness of sex slavery and human trafficking, and to encourage people in its abolition’.
The annual ecumenical Surrender conference in Belgrave (Vic.), to which The Salvation Army has historically been a financial backer and supporter, aims to encourage younger church members to be engaged in poverty alleviation, incarnational mission in urban settings and develop the ‘relationship with and involvement of the Indigenous Australian people of this land’.
It’s a significant part of the role of THQ, and specifically territorial leadership, to step back and watch for not just the waves but the tide; the trends. What’s happening, where is this going? If we continue to move in this direction, are we responding properly to a long term shift, or is there a necessary response to an immediate and temporary situation?
In tackling the issue of housing and homelessness we must embrace the larger elements of the issue beyond the need for shelter and a roof.
Chaplaincy is an important part of our ministry and service. We are appreciating the focus upon chaplaincy in this territory.
e-connect asks Commissioners Floyd and Tracey Tidd -what are the perceived differences in the pursuit of Salvation Army mission, as practised in Australia and Canada?
Check out the 19 October issue of the Australia Southern Territory’s on fire magazine for the social programme department’s others print supplement. The coming issue deals with poverty causation and alleviation, and coincides with the annual international anti-poverty week (13-19 October).
The Salvation Army believes all clients, employees, volunteers, members and officers should be treated with compassion, dignity, justice, hope in an inclusive community. This year on mental health week (7-13 October 2013) you are encouraged to share conversations about self-care and information about dealing with anxiety and depression.
16 September The Salvation Army’s Catherine Booth College is engaging in a debate with Whitley College on interactions between the church and state, at Whitley College, 50 The Avenue, Parkville.
The face of chaplaincy has changed considerably over the past two decades. While chaplains have strong Christian faith and express that faith, proselytising is not a chaplain’s role. That is not to say that chaplains cannot or do not help people come to experience the Christian faith. Major Anne Farquharson discusses a new pilot program.
Telstra provides mobile phones to people in need, as part of the work it does with The Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul, Anglicare Australia and The Smith Family, etc. Telstra works with more than 2,000 community partners throughout Australia.
The Salvation Army Australia Eastern Territory has prepared some resources for corps and social centres and services for world suicide prevention day on 10 September. Suicide claims the lives of over 2,000 people each year; more fatalities than the road toll in this country. For every person who dies there are another eight people impacted. It is estimated that more than 16,000 Australians are traumatised by suicide each year.
Almost 190 people attended the Mission Possible social work presentation and forum on Friday, 26 July. Asked what challenges the faith-based organisations faced in the pre-federal election and electioneering processes, guest speaker Chick Yuill told e-connect that defining an organisation's mission is an ongoing and important process.
Melbourne Corps 614’s Darryl Annett is working to keep Salvation Army clients engaged in holistic efforts to ‘save’ their skin. This article has been printed in the on fire magazine.
Lucinda Young has joined The Salvation Army’s team in communications and fundraising at THQ, working with schoolchildren to explain the organisation’s mission and role in Australian society, as well as raising awareness of social justice issues. Her current role has been made easier by her life experience and her qualifications in teaching and social work.
Mitcham Corps (Vic.) hosted a training day last month on working with the transgender community*, for 16 Salvation Army staff from the Melbourne Central and Eastern Victoria divisions.
Among other activities and programs, members and staff of The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory:
e-connect talks to the new territorial secretary for programme, Lieut-Colonel Graeme Rigley. At times a concern is expressed that The Salvation Army, like other churches and NGOs, is in danger of diluting its client focus, especially due to concerns about the health or prominence of the organisation? What’s your view?
Every year, across the territory, children whose parents cannot afford to take them on a holiday are given the chance to celebrate life at Salvation Army camps for children.
Captain Karen McIver, a corps officer in Carlton (Tas.), talk about the experiences of Salvationists and staff during last month’s bushfires.
We spoke to Major Geneen Wright, who is due to join the THQ social programme team early next year as assistant territorial social programme secretary.
Article 1 of the United Nations’ 1951 Refugee Convention defines a ‘refugee’ as someone who: is outside his country of nationality or habitual residence has a well-founded fear of persecution because of his race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion, and is unable or unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country, or to return there, for fear of persecution.
Chaplains are the human face of The Salvation Army. As Christmas approaches, e-connect talks to Major Karen Hill about her role as chaplain at The Salvation Army’s Linsell Lodge in South Australia.
Many Salvation Army employees are great supporters of the organisation’s annual Red Shield appeal, which raises funds for Salvation Army social programs. They may not be aware, however, of the annual Self-Denial Appeal that Salvation Army members contribute towards, with proceeds helping to fund humanitarian and spiritual work across the world.
Last month, to raise awareness of youth homelessness matters day* (10 April), the Australia Southern Territory drew attention to the plight of homeless youth through a series of short films by Salvos Studios and a Twitter campaign by the territory’s communications and fundraising department.
Belinda McNair and Gurdip Chima have commenced working for The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory in the new territorial AOD (alcohol and other drugs) unit, as service development officers, under acting territorial alcohol and other drugs (AOD) director Debra Little.
Tuesday, 6 December brought more than the usual panic-buying of Christmas presents and comestibles. Kingston Gardens Corps (Vic.), with its regular Tuesday community gathering for people with physical and mental disabilities, witnessed the launch of the King’s Tone Choir. Approximately 80 people, including family members and well-wishers, gathered for the Tuesday club’s Christmas break-up.
Westcare’s ‘As Eye See It’ project gives young people in care the opportunity to express themselves creatively through photography, writing/journalling and design.
Lynette Stock, the Hobart PLP facilitator, reflects on a successful training day earlier this year with the Positive Lifestyle Program (PLP), an effective tool to help others.
This year has been a big one for Westcare Child and Adolescent Services - Westcare celebrated 30 years of operation in January 2011.
Cleric and author Peter Millar reflects on Christmases spent in India ‘with the bullocks close by, and chickens running in and out’.
Approximately 65 people attended a national inaugural Project New Dawn (PND) *celebration event at The Salvation Army’s Melbourne 614 premises at 69 Bourke Street in early May. The delegates, from The Salvation Army and BP Australia, travelled from Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Newcastle and Perth.
Following the successful application for $495,000 of two-year funding from the federal department of health and ageing earlier this year, The Salvation Army’s Melbourne Corps 614 street teams* (which have been operating since December 2010) were preparing to augment their service by operating on Melbourne’s railways from 1 June 2012.
Service to others is not new to me*, but I must admit that when I came to Australia from the UK some decades ago I was shocked by the extent to which the churches undertake social work here (in the UK, welfare and welfare delivery predominantly stems from the government).
We have an enormous responsibility, which is also highly complex in a multicultural society. In many faith-based organisations the main driving force is social justice. There is an inherent challenge, also, to evaluate our resources and confirm if we are making a relevant response: does the ‘how’ of our efforts match the ‘why’?
The momentum of Doorways implementation across The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory is accelerating, the positive progress is being driven by strong support from leadership in each of the divisional headquarters, and high levels of interest, energy and excitement from staff and volunteers.
Kathryn Wright, the territorial alcohol and other drugs (AOD) director, has welcomed Deb Little to the AOD team at territorial headquarters. Deb, until recently the network director of the Kardinia Network in the Western Victoria Division, has worked for The Salvation Army in the AOD sector for 11 years.
Deb Little started as an administration assistant at the Geelong Withdrawal Unit in late 2001.