As we celebrated 99 years of the battle of ANZAC cove, we had the opportunity to be involved with 3 Anzac day mass reflections and attend a memorial celebration in Havelock North.
Each year on ANZAC day we are reminded that we are all called to be people of love and peace and to remember and honour those who have gone before us.
This day gives us a chance for our younger generation to remember alongside past war veterans. In Havelock North we had an opportunity to meet 3 war veterans, the oldest being 97 and our youngest being 5.
Over the ANZAC weekend three masses took place, one in Hawkes Bay and two in Wellington, Eastbourne and Johnsonville.
Our staff, Gap year students and young people from both Wellington and Hawkes bay presented a drama at all 3 masses. This drama was a time when we reflected on the many lives lost, the suffering and pain experienced by our small country. We remembered the great sacrifice our soldiers and their families made so that the generations that followed could live in peace.
We are each called to remember those who served for our country and acknowledge those who continue to serve today.
We will remember them
On Anzac Day, Challenge 2000 Hawkes Bay and 12 local young people put on a drama in both Havelock North and Napier with the theme of “remembering our ancestors who served our country by doing the same in this millennium”. Both plays were received well by those who attended and many older and younger people were moved to tears.
A different team acted in a similar drama at Eastbourne and Johnsonville on Saturday and Sunday 27/28 April. Once again it was well received by everyone present. Many people remarked on the connection between the service and sacrifice of our Anzac ancestors who died overseas or came home to build a better nation and the young people’s challenge today to be people who serve and bring about justice and peace.
This photo taken in Johnsonville speaks for itself.
A big thank you to everyone who helped out at the special Jville Youth Mass to farewell Sr Josepha from Ss Peter and Paul’s parish Johnsonville. People came from all over the Wellington region (and Whanganui!) to honour Sr Josepha who has served the parish and community whole heartedly for so many years. Her work within and beyond our parish is inspiring! Sr Josepha has always supported Challenge 2000 and has done so much behind the scenes that made all the difference. At the Mass it was commonly mentioned that her home was always open to whoever, whenever and that she was always willing to garden or bake!
Sister Josepha (far right) with family
It was Challenge’s privilege to be able to put on the farewell Mass. The singing, reading, drama, hospitality and haka came together to make an incredible tribute for an incredible woman. The occasion brought people from all over together to give generously back to Sr Josepha; whether that was through baking for morning tea, singing and playing music, acting or giving a helping hand where needed. It definitely proved that many hands make light work! A special thank you to Fr Peter and to all who made this so special. We had some wonderful feedback from those who enjoyed the occasion.
The Odyssey group had an awesome start to the school holidays with the much-anticipated camp! The weekend kicked off on Friday night when we all jumped in the vans and headed to Forest Lakes in Otaki. The traditional road trip sing-a-longs showed that everyone was getting amped for a very eventful weekend. We arrived to supper and a challenge for the weekend. The theme of “Oh the Places You’ll Go” by Dr. Suess was introduced and the participants got thinking and talking about their dreams and journeys. Before bedtime we had come to the conclusion that nobody reaches “the places you’ll go” without daring to dream.
Team work essential to get through this obstacle
Saturday morning brought fun of a different kind; trust exercises and abseiling. The trust exercises enabled everyone to work well as a team. Communication was a common theme that the small groups discussed. It was awesome to see young people co-operating so well. Abseiling down a thirteen metre cliff was a real challenge for many of the participants and leaders. Those who abseiled showed great courage and perseverance, some even managed to go down face first! It was great to see everyone supporting the person coming down the wall. These activities had everybody thinking about the theme of the camp.
Respect is the foundation for unity
The activities were followed by group sessions focussing on personal development, faith and values. Participants really got an opportunity to explore their personal beliefs and ask the questions you might not normally have time for. Why do bad things happen to good people? Who is God? What can I do for society today? What is justice? And so many more.
"Why does this mud smell so bad?"
In the afternoon, the mudslide proved to be popular once again. Even though it was freezing the majority of the group got out and gave it a go. They came back dripping, dirty and smelling not only of mud but it was well worth it.
Otaki based Marist Pa Rob Devlin joined us on Saturday night to share insights into service and social justice. Rob talked about his years in the soup kitchen and working in various other ministries for the poor and marginalised.
We ended camp on Sunday with team challenges. This gave participants a chance to use their talents, whether they are music, public speaking, drama, art or push-ups (Go Luke!!). It was an entertaining way to wrap up camp activities.
Team Challenge Performance
Camp concluded with affirmations. New friendships were formed and the group now has a whole new sense of belonging. Now we are all home and can not stop thinking about the places we will go! There is so much more to look forward to in the Odyssey programme. The best is yet to come!
50% of our young people participating in our programmes do not have access to private transport or enough money to pay for public transport. Others are not safe to travel and need to be collected from home or their care givers place. Our camps and youth development programmes also need a van or two to transport participants – not to mention our sports, cultural and drama teams!!!
So thank you to those that have helped us to get another van!!!
Helping us to help others:
My name is Manu I’m 21 years of age and have been a full time employee at Challenge 2000 for a few years. My role at C2K is not only a youth worker but someone who helps out on work projects. We as a team try to raise funds for C2K by doing jobs for others, but we also give a lending hand when needed such as mowing lawns, removing rubbish or just odd jobs for people that can’t do some things for themselves. We do a large range of work from tree work to building decks and retaining walls. I also help out at camps and do some sports and recreational activities with young people. All this is impossible without wheels – Thank you!!.
Since being a part of Challenge 2000 I have put my theatrical skills to use in creating and staging small scale shows with the students at Challenge College. Last year we explored Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and at the end of the 2009 the audience was invited to a party in Porirua in the play called “It’s My Party.”
This year we will have a devised performance to prepare and we’ll be revisiting Shakespeare’s works in term 3. I have been a professional theatre practitioner for 10 years as a composer, actor, writer, director and just recently I co-wrote and performed a play in the International Arts Festival called He Reo Aroha which will do a return season at Circa Theatre in June. In April this year I was invited to Hong Kong to workshop with students as part of an International Youth Theatre Project called Strangers 2.
I look forward to working with the Challenge College students this term to devise an exciting piece we can perform back to the community.