Social Justice Ministry
The parish has three key social
justice outreach projects; one local, one national and one international. These
were selected as part of a parish discernment some years ago.
1. Local Outreach – Streetwork
2. National Outreach – Sister
Parishes of Bourke and Brewarrina
3. International Outreach – Maubara
Orphanage in Timor Leste
StreetWork is a non-denominational, for-purpose,
community organisation working with 'at risk' young people affected by
crime, mental health issues, violence, destructive relationships, social
isolation, homelessness, those disengaged from school or with poor employment
opportunities and those impacted by alcohol and substance abuse, to turn their
lives around. At StreetWork we seek to give 'at risk' young people
the same opportunities as their peers .. that is to grow, to achieve their
dreams and to develop as a person with high self esteem. Our flagship program, is a one-on-one mentoring which
we call KickStart, which aims to break the cycle of destructive behaviours and
help them turn their lives around.
We aim to provide pastoral and
financial support to these outback parishes. There have been a number of
initiatives of outreach, practical and financial support that have fostered
mutual respect and friendship.
Maubara Orphanage Timor Leste
The Carmelite Sisters care for around 27 girls ranging in ages from 6 to 16 at Maubara. They are well cared for and attend the local school. As a result of a generous bequest from one of our parishioners, accommodation has been built in Fatuada in Dili. This enables the senior girls to complete their last years of secondary schooling in Dili. Parish funds have provided new furniture and furnishings for the new dormitory. We believe that education is the key to a sustainable future for the young people of Timor Leste.
Ana has recently graduated from the dental college in Kupang
which is in west Timor and is in Indonesian territory. Her decision to study in
West Timor was a courageous one as it meant leaving her known supports in Timor
Leste. She would like to do further study but is putting that on hold so that
she can assist her brothers and sisters by working for a while in West Timor
where she is feels there are greater learning opportunities for her. When she has consolidated her dental practice
she will return to Timor Leste.
Following the death of her father, Emi’s family struggled to
provide for their daily needs and the cost of education was beyond them. At the
age of 12 Emi began her life in the orphanage. She is now 23 years old and
successfully studying Political Science at the University of Timor Leste. Emi
is described as being very studious, kind and thoughtful. Her dream is to be
able to improve difficult life of her family and of other families in Timor
Leste. When asked about how she has been so successful with her studies, Emi
responds that it is through ‘struggle and sacrifice.’
Teresa has been at the orphanage since she was a
baby. With the support of the Carmelite sisters she has worked hard to overcome
some difficult times in her life. Teresa has also been determined to become
proficient in English and is now studying Law at the University of Timor Leste.
Teresa is now described as being confident, energetic and with the ability to
carefully think through her decisions. She is confident about a pathway to a