Help on Youth Problems
Dubbo gets help in war on youth problems
1 February 2005
A committed band of voluntary youth workers took up residence in Dubbo this week to begin a year of service to the local Dubbo Community. In a week where Dubbo again aired the problems with crime and violence, particularly amongst its youth, it could prove to be a valuable contribution to the town.
Cornerstone Community has three second-year 'mission teams' operating in Dubbo in 2005. One of them is a group of five ladies based in South Dubbo.
The Cornerstone Community was established 25 years ago with the vision of giving practical expression to, and teaching in, the Christian faith as a 'whole of life' experience. These teams are part of the accredited Training Course offered by Cornerstone and are designed to be of service to the local community whilst giving the team members a year of practical 'on the job' training in a range of vital areas.
Cornerstone's Dean of Mission, Mr Peter Volkofsky, has seen many teams placed throughout Australia during his time in Cornerstone. He explained the vital role that the teams play in the ministry of Cornerstone:
Cornerstone has a 'whole of life' approach that is fundamental to our approach in the development and deployment of self sufficient mission teams. These teams are our 'front-line' in what Cornerstone is trying to do in Australia and beyond.
Following the model of Jesus and the early church, these teams seek to become integrated into local communities by working in local businesses, schools, youth groups, sporting clubs and many other areas of need and opportunity.
They do this with a commitment to local church involvement and continuing their training course and they represent a small but dynamic and focused group of people working together to make a positive contribution to the town.
We are currently unable to take up invitations to send teams to 12 other regional areas in Victoria and Queensland which means that the three teams we have put into Dubbo are a very significant investment into the life of the town.
The Ladies' team has spent the first week finding part time work in Dubbo to ensure that their activities are entirely self-supported. The current team includes three students from Cornerstone's Canowindra Training Centre and two from the Dubbo Campus. Team leader Li Yean Wong, a recent Graduate from Cornerstone's three year Advanced Diploma Course is the team leader. She spoke of what the team hopes to achieve this year:
"We know that there are incredible needs in Dubbo at the moment. In our first week in town there were several meetings to discuss some of the needs of this town's youth population and ways to address boredom and hopelessness.
We hope that through the year we can form a link with people throughout the town through our various activities." Hopefully their contact with us will give positive alternatives and a sense of hopefulness that there are good alternatives to some of the vices they seem to be choosing for themselves like substance abuse, violence and theft."
The work of Cornerstone teams has been highly valued in many country towns and regional centres. Recently the Principal of the Gulgong Primary School, Mr Alan Walker had this to say about the work of Cornerstone's Gulgong Team:
"It is with sadness that we note the impending absence from our community of the Cornerstone Youth Team. The Cornerstone Youth Team have made a positive impact on the youth and families of our town in their short time here."
"They have been working in Gulgong High and Public School for more than two years as scripture teachers and playground activity leaders, mentoring and helping identified students with self esteem, confidence and friendships."
"The work that the Cornerstone Youth Team has done has been outstanding and we will all miss their positive input. We wish the individual Cornerstone people all the very best in their next field of endeavour and offer our sincere thanks for a job well done."
Cornerstone Community currently operates Training Centres in, Dubbo, Broken Hill, Canowindra and Swan Hill and operates two schools in Dubbo and Bourke. In 2005 10 mission teams will be placed in five States across Australia. Vacancies still exist in Cornerstone's intensive discipleship program for 2005.
For more information contact:
106R Bunglegumbie Road
Dubbo NSW 2830
Postal: PO Box 1151 Dubbo NSW 2830
Phone: (02) 6884 0402
fax: (02) 6881 6450