Wednesday mornings at Bicton Uniting Church are a hive of activity. At the men’s shed there are men building things and upstairs in the main building there is a tap dance class. In the reception area there are three tables, around which are seated a group of industrious people sorting small squares into piles. This is the Uniting Church Mission Fellowship’s (WA) Stamp Team.
The Uniting Church WA has a long history of raising funds through stamp collecting and selling. While there has been a number of people working at it for a while, it has galvanised more recently into an organised offshoot of the Mission Fellowship. In the short 18 month life of this stamp collecting group they have raised a staggering $8 000 for Frontier Services’ Patrol Ministry in WA.
Bob and Kay Lockley, members at Bicton Uniting Church, took over the running of the group 18 months ago. The group that meets at Bicton every Wednesday (except for the third Wednesday of each month) are the sorting crew. They are responsible for sorting stamps according to their value and type before the stamps are sent off to a bulk stamp buying agency that arranges to sell them on to stamp collectors all over Australia.
There is a lot of work involved; the men and women at Bicton are only a small portion of the community contributing to the stamp collecting work supporting Frontier Services in WA.
“We have some people in the country – Ongerup, Denmark – who post in packets of stamps. People leave them at the church office and I usually call in to pick them up,” Bob said.
Along with individuals are a number of Uniting Church WA congregations collecting stamps for the cause including Pinjarra Uniting Church, Lighthouse Church in Geraldton and Uniting Church in the City, where a box is kept for people to donate stamps. Some collectors source stamps from local businesses and medical clinics. For people who want to contribute to this effort, Bob suggested, “they can scout around their area, businesses, medical practices, any office that receives mail, and try to get their stamps. The first thing is to secure and extend our source of stamps.”
For more information contact Bob Lockley via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.