We are so encouraged by the continuing drop in COVID numbers and move to Level 1. We pray for wisdom for our countries leaders and trust for safety as the country begins to open up.
One of the changes for CHS is that we will soon be moving from prerecorded online services to lives streaming our 9am Sunday gathering on Youtube starting on 4 October.
Services can be viewed on our Youtube channel
The Future Sparks After School Programme update – Jenny Person
Future Sparks is an After School programme for children and youth living in Westlake.
After School programmes provide learners with opportunities for enrichment in the academic, psycho-social and extra-curricular areas. Research has shown that After school programmes reduce dropout rates in schools by motivating learners to stay in school through the sense of belonging and support given through personal relationships with tutors and this has a positive impact on future success of these learners. The vision for the programme is to continue working with the learners when they move on to and through their High School years. This is a critical time when they move away from the safety of their local primary school and often have to travel long distances to reach their high schools. Dropout rates are unfortunately high, as a result of many barriers faced while attending these schools.
Dropout rates are unfortunately high, as a result of many barriers faced while attending these schools.
Future Sparks began in January 2020 with Grade 7 learners at Westlake Primary school, we enrolled just over 65 learners who became regular, enthusiastic attendees of the programme. A wonderful group of almost 20 volunteers invested their time and energy into the programme, facilitating 4 sessions a week (Monday – Thursday) at the Primary school campus, using the hall and then classrooms for small group time.
Each session was started with a healthy snack and register. On Mondays and Thursdays the learners focused on Math’s and English tutoring in small groups. On Tuesdays learners were able to choose one from the following extra curricular activities: Drama, Singing or Soccer. On Wednesdays a life skills programme focusing on personal identity and growth was run by Ronald and his team.
The programme ran with high energy and great attendance for 7 weeks, there were some ups and down and curveballs to deal with as we adjusted the programme to suit the spaces and people we were working with. However, with the increasing threat of the spread of Covid19 and imminent lock down we were forced to stop the programme at the school.
It is hard to understand why a programme started in January, which ran for such a short time had to shut down, when we felt the call to start this programme so clearly in the latter half of 2019. But God knew this would happen, so we trust that through all the disappointment that we felt, God has a plan, and that we need to persevere and keep doing what we can, to stay connected to the learners.
It is hard to understand why a programme started in January… But God knew this would happen, so we trust that through all the disappointment that we felt, God has a plan…
During the level 4 & 5 lockdown, thanks to a WhatsApp group which we had created for the parents we were able to communicate with the parents of our learners. This allowed us to hand out learning material for the grade 7’s that we could reach during the hard lockdown. We were not able to connect in a significant way due to the restrictions, but we could at least provide something for them to do at home. Once the grade 7’s were back at school we realised that we would still not be able to have face-to-face contact with them due to the Education Department restrictions on access to school property by outside groups. So we began to research what others tutoring programmes were doing during lockdown to reach their learners. It seemed that online tutoring through WhatsApp groups was the most effective way to connect although by no means easy or as effective. It took some time to get consent from the parents for their children to be contacted via cell phones, as this is a basic Child protection requirement. In the end we managed to get 50 learners into 8 WhatsApp groups to contact them and work with them twice a week. We were able to get maths material (videos and worksheets) from a generous Private Maths Tutoring company (Math&Me) which we could distribute via WhatsApp groups. FunDza (a non profit organization working in the literacy development) helped us through webinars to learn how to run reading groups using WhatsApp. So we began tutoring in August. This has been a challenging and new way of relating to the learners. Firstly, 50% of the learners do not have their own phone, so they rely on a family member’s phone which can only be accessed for use at a certain time, which makes it difficult to come on to the WhatsApp groups during the active time (usually 5-6:30pm on Mondays and Thursdays). Secondly data costs are a major issue for families who are struggling in the current economic climate to just provide for basic needs. There are also some learners who are shy and reticent in this online tutoring space. But we continue to try to support the learners and let them know that they’re seen and heard and that we are here for them.
But we continue to try to support the learners and let them know that they’re seen and heard and that we are here for them.
The Ubomi Charitable Trust was initiated and founded during lockdown, this is a legal Non Profit Trust entity that gives ministries inclusive of Future Hope ministry (formerly Future Life) the ability to fundraise more effectively for the needs of these ministries. Future Sparks is part of this trust.. A new Future Hope Ministries website was also developed by the team during lockdown and can be viewed here: https://www.futurehope.org.za/
Please pray for the Future Sparks programme, this year has not worked out the way we thought it would! But we’d so much like to continue our relationship with the learners in the years ahead, to nurture hope for the future and a desire for change by providing opportunities for growth in character and skills.
Changing mindsets. Restoring hope. Re-imagining futures
We are starting a new video interview series called … The Church has left the building.
Check out this week’s first episode with John Gilmour, Founder of LEAP Schools.
We have left our building but continue to be church in homes, workplaces and communities across our city. The lockdown has been very isolating and we hope to encourage and connect people to the experiences of others during this time. To share testimonies and stories of how members of the congregation are living out their faith during these challenging times.
31 May 2020
Today in the midst of change and uncertainty, we celebrate Pentecost, the gift of the Holy Spirit and CHS’s 21st Birthday!
‘“In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.
I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Sadly during lockdown we can’t all celebrate ‘in style’ together!
I’m sure, like us, you’re all missing seeing our friends and familiar faces at our Sunday services, so our fantastic ‘tech wizard’ Zane, has put together a CHS 21st Birthday Celebration video clip, to mark the occasion and to share with you, our wonderful CHS family!
As a part of CHS’s 21st Birthday celebration, we are remembering the God-led events that led to the planting of the church.We will be sharing 3 video interviews with those who were involved in responding to God’s call.
Rev Duncan Mclea, our Parish Rector, chats with Zane to share the story of how the parish responded to God’s call and established CHS in Kirstenhof.
Eleanor Lawrence who was amongst the first “plantees”, coming from St John’s, Wynberg to start the new church. Eleanor reminisces about the early vision, the reality of a very basic church building, and what God has been doing ever since to build his church community in and through CHS.
Simon Pearson shares about how he and Anne became involved in the planting of a new church.
We just wanted to let you know the exciting news, that we are setting up a temporary microsite in part of our building. CHS is partnering with homeless charity U-Turn, CAN Muizenberg, MID and other churches and NGOS to provide a home for 9 vulnerable women from the Muizenberg street community, from 4 June til 31 July.
A huge thank you to the many who have provided bedding and clothes for the microsite. We do still need help with food over the weekends. If you would like to support the women, you can drop off food supplies at Church of the Holy Spirit, 38 Raapkraal Road, Kirstenhof.
The team, led by U-Turn, will provide volunteers, medical support, food, psycho-social support, a development program and an exit strategy. They will be following comprehensive guidelines for how to run a Covid-19 compliant microsite for homeless people and will ensure compliance with all relevant regulations.
If you have any questions or would like to help please contact Judy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Keegan and Brendan interview –
24-7 sign up sheet
Parish Daily Prayer Prompts
Virtual Prayer Room
The CHS building will be closed during the lockdown.
We have left the building but we are still the church.
We are showing love by staying home to keep ourselves and others safe
We are showing love as we serve at checkout counters and in hospitals
We are showing love as we chat with a neighbour over the fence
We are showing love when call to check in on the vulnerable or alone
We are showing love as we share our resources with those whose wells have run dry
We are showing love as we pray
We lift our eyes above the waves
To the face of our Saviour and Lord
He is good
He is faithful
He is compassionate
He is Love
During the lockdown we will be:
- Praying – “My house will be called a house of Prayer”
- Sharing daily devotions (songs, testimonies and scripture) online
- Sharing resources for children and youth to worship and reflect
- Encouraging each other as we adjust to this new reality
Letter from Parish Rector and Team Leader Duncan McLea
Please click on the link below to read a pastoral letter from Duncan to all the churches of the parish. Duncan reflects on the lament of Psalm 137 as the people cry out… “How can we sing the songs of the LORD while in a foreign land?” (Psa 137:3)
- We have set up a CHS Staying Connected Watsapp group to keep in touch. Please email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to be added to it.
- We have also set up a CHS Support List of those who are vulnerable or might be in need of practical or pastoral support. Colleen, Judy Van Zyl, Lyn, Ros and Brendan will manage the list and track the needs and co-ordinate a response. Please email email@example.com or message Colleen at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are in need of support or know who is in need of support.
Sermon: Genesis 2:1-4
Financial Status Report: Angie Tate
Supporting Slides for Financial Report: CHS BUDGET PRESENTATION 2018