Christmas with UnitingCare West

While Christmas is a time of joy and celebration, almost one third of West Australians feel the stress of disadvantage and isolation during the festive season.

Many people will seek help from charities for their basic needs such as food, or for assistance paying bills. Many more feel lonely and disconnected from family, friends and their community.

This Christmas, UnitingCare West expect to see more than 2 000 people at their hubs in Perth, Fremantle and Merriwa. For the first time, UnitingCare West’s Tranby Centre in Aberdeen Street will be open every day during the Christmas and New Year period, from 7.00am to 7.00pm. Continue Reading

SHARE and humanity thrives

Rev Roy Surjanegara is the Minister at GKI Perth Uniting Church, an Indonesian speaking congregation in Mosmon Park. This edition, he writes about this year’s Family and Culture Month at their church.

September is the month to celebrate family life and Indonesian culture for GKI Perth Uniting Church. We call it ‘Family and Culture Month’. Each Sunday, one ethnic group is highlighted in the service through the use of the local languages for the Bible readings, songs, and prayers. Musical instruments, clothing, decorations, and traditional food also play an important part in creating the atmosphere of being in Indonesia for a day. This year, we celebrated the Batak culture of Sumatera, the Sunda culture of West Java, the Dayak culture of Borneo, and the Tionghoa culture of Indonesian-Chinese descendants. Continue Reading

Moderator’s column – A house and a garment: hope for the planet

Save the planet’, ‘care for creation’, ‘love the environment’ are some of the slogans we hear as the voice of concern gets louder for our beautiful, yet plundered and polluted planet.

Behind these concerns for our ecology there is a deeper question; is there a purpose, a plan or indeed a mind behind the solar system? Are we just the result of freak accidents of cosmic  collisions or is there more? Continue Reading

Community refugee sponsorship: a local solution for a global issue

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) forecast that 1.44 million people will be in need of resettlement across the globe in 2020. Meanwhile, last year less than 7% of people in need of global resettlement were settled into new homes.

Australia currently offers the Community Support Program to help resettle refugees into the country. Under this program, individuals or businesses can support refugees to begin their new lives in Australia. This may sound great, but critics point out that the program has some major flaws, and is actually inaccessible to most people.

As global conflict is creating more and more refugees each year, the Uniting Church WA is calling for a new compassionate and generous refugee sponsorship program in Australia; supporting the introduction of the Community Refugee Sponsorship Initiative. Continue Reading

Book Launch: A Kimberley Collaboration

The book, A Kimberley Collaboration” The Story of the Boab Network 2008 – 2018, will be launched in Floreat, on Sunday 17 November with author Rev Dr Robert Hoskin from Melbourne and Boab Network members.

The book is a history of the Boab Network. This group of volunteers originated from All Saints Floreat Uniting Church, but now involves people from the wider community and other states who work together with the Mowanjum Aboriginal Community, near Derby in the West Kimberley.Continue Reading

Looking for people with room in their hearts and their homes

UnitingCare West’s Futures Foster Care service is looking for people with empathy and compassion to provide a home to young people with high care needs who are no longer able to live with their families.

Futures provides long-term disability and therapeutic foster care options for children and young people who may have significant trauma and abuse histories, as well as developmental, physical and/or medical care needs.

Neil and Beth Reynolds fostered their first child around 18 years ago, after raising five children of their own. They now share their lives with five foster children, aged 29, 11, 10, seven and five.Continue Reading

Sustained by faith, hope and love

Rev Nalin Perera, Chaplain at Wesley College shares his reflections on faith, hope and love through the journey of life.

Throughout my adult life journey I have discovered with each passing year that life, first and foremost, is a journey of hope, with its twin companion, faith. Ultimately, by necessity, life has to also be a journey of love, otherwise it will lack depth and any real sense of purpose.

In the early weeks of January, I was struck down by a mystery illness, so serious that I was rushed to hospital and admitted to intensive care. Continue Reading