Sally Anne is a member of Shomer Achi, Emanuel Synagogue’s teen Social Justice Youth Group. Last holidays group members volunteered at the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence (NCIE) camp for young children. Sally Anne shares their experience:
Last Thursday, some members of Shomer Achi went to volunteer for a day at a holiday camp in Redfern run for indigenous children. We helped to run some small activities such as: weaving with paper plates and colouring in pictures. This was when we met the children initially, and they were very friendly. After this we took the bus to Centennial Park and assisted the children with a bike riding activity. It was challenging at first as many of the children had never ridden a bike before, but the look on their faces was priceless when they finished the circuit on their bikes for the first time.
We then took a bus back to Redfern and had a performance from three men that are Aboriginal Dreamtime storytellers and dancers. The children got involved and painted themselves white and participated in the dances with the men that they performed for, the workers and volunteers. The children then played some games while myself and a couple of other Shomer Achi members cleaned the area where they had done the performance and then we went to join them. We read the children stories and watched them do some yoga and then played with them until they needed to be picked up.
The day was very rewarding; it is such an amazing thing to be able to volunteer and to see the effect that your help has on the people you are helping. The children were very appreciative and it was great to spend time with them.