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I’m thinking of deleting my Facebook account…

I remember when Facebook became “the thing”. I remember not being in university and being jealous of all the older kids who were part of the privileged that got to have their own account. From the time I was young I have always been infatuated with technology.  I remember saving up enough money to buy my own Dell desktop computer by the time I was 12. These three large boxes came in the mail, and I couldn’t wait to rip into them to set it up on my new Walmart desk.

The Internet, as we all know, has opened this world up in a whole new way. This generation is the most well informed generation than any other in history because of what it has available at it’s fingertips.  The most common worldview nowadays is not what our parents tell us, what we see from our window, or what we learn in school anymore. The new worldview is what you see scrolling through Facebook, on Buzzfeed, or anything that makes you curious enough to Google.  Our worldview is now decided for us by millions of pixels put together by other people all around the world.

I look at my Timehop and realise that the younger me posted a play by play of my entire life on some form of social media. Seven years ago today I was trying to learn Twitter, watching a university football game, and studying for an A&P class.  My language was a little more vulgar, and my grammar was surprisingly even worse than it is today.

Social media has irrevocably changed our lives.

I increasingly hear adults saying that they are going to delete their Facebook account, or they are sick of the junk on their feed everyday.

“It’s too much”
“It’s not good for me”
“It’s stressing me out”
“It’s so negative”
“I don’t need this in my life”

“I’m deleting Facebook, I can’t handle it anymore,”

 

I’ve been really challenged by this, and to be honest there are entire months where I completely disconnect from Facebook for that exact reason.  With all the devastation, politics, negativity, and hatred there are days when I just simply can’t deal with it.  I delete it from my phone and rarely check my feed on my desktop if at all, sometimes for 30 days or more at at time.

Living thousands of miles from home in a foreign country I find this hard.  It’s one of the only ways to see the day to day of my family and friends back home, and it leaves this gap in my life where I feel like I am missing out even more than just physically. Not long ago I was scrolling through my Facebook feed watching people take part in the ice bucket challenge (one of the few, positive trends as of late), I saw people deciding whether a dress was black and gold or blue and black.  I watched as young girls discovered selfies, relationship statuses, and how to pucker their lips.  Another thing I saw, was a young man’s face I recognized from high school… over and over again.

I remember him.  I remember his face walking through the halls, his older two brothers who had it all together. Jake* was the youngest of three and you could tell he felt a little like the black sheep of his family. His brothers excelled in just about everything they did. He was a class clown, a little too cool for his own good, and always in just a little bit of trouble.

Except now it looks like he got mixed up in a nasty drug deal that had him and his new wife arrested and in jail. Meth didn’t do his sunken eyes any favours, and it looked like he had aged 10 years since I last saw him.  I didn’t even know he was married, much less struggling with what was an obvious drug addiction taking over his life.

What shocked me more than his arrest was my small town’s response.  A small town who loved each other, has each others backs, calls everyone family, and prides itself on loving others as much as themselves.
We had really proven all this wrong when not even 24 hours after Jake’s arrest, his news release had been shared OVER 732 times from one site.

Imagine thousands of people knowing your face, and your name by one mistake.

I was heartbroken.
Suddenly, this grabbed my attention. When you share something on Facebook you’re essentially endorsing it, and saying that it’s something worth even more of the world knowing about. Instead of covering this guy in love, encouragement, hope, faith, and prayer we are instead posting it all over our walls for more to see. More shame. More humiliation. More failure. More embarrassment.

This set my insides burning and a spark that made me realise the responsibility I carry when I sign into my accounts online. I have the power to bring life, or harm in others lives. My feed is the same as what comes out of my mouth.

This guy made a horrible mistake, and eventually he will stand in a courtroom and someone will read out the consequences of these actions.  We know that will be handled, because that’s how the system works.  I think we owed him more than 732 shares.  I think we owed him love, mercy, and a few prayers…  after all, he’s not that much different than any of us.

I’m not saying I’m innocent, and I love social media more than most people I know… but I think “with great power, comes great responsibility”. We can’t afford to be Social Media Bullies anymore… we have to accept the fact that “Sharing” an article is the same thing as gossip… we have generations behind us that need to learn the principles and etiquette of Facebook, but we have to walk the walk in order to be the example we want to see in the world.

We will inevitably multiply anything, and everything we do to those around us. If we aren’t aware of that, then we will miss the opportunity to raise up world changers.

Instead of deleting our facebook, let’s give people a reason to keep theirs.
Share stuff that matters.

 

Lea Emerson

Lea Emerson joined us in 2011 from small town Paris, Texas. Lea serves in many different areas but plays a main role in Marketing and Communications. She’s an excellent leader, teacher, story teller, and never short of an idea. She enjoys coffee, being with good company, and watching documentaries.

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Discipleship Training School - Townsville Campus

Our Discipleship Training School (DTS) gives you the opportunity to set aside five and a half months of your life to grow in your faith while serving the world around you. After 13 weeks of training and discipleship at our campus in Townsville, Australia, we take you on nine weeks of cross-cultural outreach. The DTS is a life-changing experience! 

10802NAT - Certificate III in Discipleship 

Dates
  • 28 January - 28 June, 2024
  • 14 July - 13 December, 2024
  • 13 October, 2024 - 14 March, 2025
  • 26 January - 27 June, 2025
  • 13 July - 12 December, 2025
  • 19 October, 2025 - 20 March 2026

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Discipleship Training School - Port Moresby Campus, Papua New Guinea

The DTS will run from our satellite campus in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. The DTS will include a unique combination of discipleship, hands-on missions experience during both lectures and outreach, and the opportunity to make history as we establish a new campus in Port Moresby for generations to come.

Dates
  • 28 January - 28 June, 2024
  • 14 July - 13 December, 2024
  • 26 January - 27 June, 2025
  • 13 July - 12 December, 2025

 

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Introduction to Global Health & Development

Be immersed in a powerful combination of essential basic healthcare knowledge and community development training, with a focus on preventing illness, promoting holistic wellbeing, and empowering communities to develop their strengths.

Townsville Campus

To be announced

Port Moresby Campus
  • 14 July - 13 December, 2024
  • 13 July - 12 December, 2025
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HLT31220 - Certificate III in Basic Health

HLTAID009 -  Provide Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

HLTAID013 - Provide First Aid in remote or isolated site 

HLTAID014 -  Provide Advanced First Aid

HLT31220 - Certificate III in Basic Health

HLTAID009 -  Provide Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

HLTAID013 - Provide First Aid in remote or isolated site 

HLTAID014 -  Provide Advanced First Aid

 

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Global Health & Development Gap Year

Our Global Health & Development Gap Year calls those whose heart beats to see communities thriving - physically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually. The Global Health & Development Gap Year is designed for both those that have experience in the health / community development industry, and for those who are starting out on their journey of healthcare in missions.

10802NAT - Certificate III in Discipleship

HLT31220 - Certificate III in Basic Health

HLTAID009 -  Provide Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

HLTAID013 - Provide First Aid in remote or isolated site

HLTAID014 -  Provide Advanced First Aid

Dates

28 January - 13 December 2024

26 January - 12 December 2025

 

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Discipleship Bible School

During the course, you will have an opportunity to dig deep into the Bible, reading through all 66 books, gaining an overall perspective of God’s story. You will learn techniques for effective Bible study, and your speakers will help unlock the Bible’s fascinating content.

You will also be taught on topics. For example – you will look at Worldview and Origins as you study through Genesis, Exodus, and Job. Or you might look at Leadership and Worship as you study the life of David in 1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Chronicles, and the Psalms. Each book is filled with insights to be discovered!

Dates

28 January - 28 June 2024

26 January - 27 June 2025

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Introduction to Radio & Media

Good communication is essential for strong relationships, healthy families, and communities! Our mission is to train and equip effective communicators to share good news and influence positive community growth.

CUA31020 Certificate III in Screen and Media

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All Courses

Our wide range of registered training courses are designed to help equip you for your field of passion.

We combine elements of informal, formal, and non-formal education to not only impart knowledge and skill, but also good character, important life skills, and the motivation to serve and invest into the lives of others.

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Join YWAM Staff

Our volunteer staff team is a diverse mix of different nationalities, ages, skills, giftings, and backgrounds. Their dedication and passion makes what we do possible and we are always looking to expand our team!

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Pathways with YWAM

We have a range of pathways within our training and ministry that allows you to specialise in your area and grow your skillsets. From Hospitality to Global Health you can upskill yourself while impacting those around you

 


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Resources
Joining us for a Discipleship Training School (DTS) or Gap Year with us soon? We have compiled a few resources to help prepare you for the amazing journey that’s ahead!

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For Parents
Do you have a child that is interested in a YWAM DTS or Gap Year? We have created some resources for you as your child navigates their YWAM experience. 
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YWAM Precinct

Our recently developed YWAM Precinct located in Townsville’s CBD is the perfect hub for youth to find belonging and empowerment. A high, medium and low ropes course, brand new cafe, and multi-purpose warehouse space for seminars and other activities allows youth the opportunity to flourish through adventure based learning.

 

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Youth Ambassadors

As a Youth Ambassador you will have the opportunity to lead your peers and the wider community in helping to support the work of YWAM Medical Ships in Papua New Guinea.

 

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Work Experience

We offer the opportunity for students to complete their work experience at our city campus in Townsville. This unique opportunity gives students the ability to not only explore a future career pathway, but also get a taste of working with a local charity that is dedicated to serving the community.

 

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Schools & Youth Leaders

We know that really quality, committed youth workers, teachers and families are some of the best things young people can have in their formative years. Our hope is to make your job a little bit easier by offering adventure based learning, mentoring resources, leadership and training pathways, and service based learning opportunities for youth. 

 

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Transitional Accommodation

YWAM operates a home in Townsville for at-risk youth. YWAM receives tenant referrals from local collaborating youth support organizations.

 

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Vision & Approach

We have the hope to create a safe environment for the youth of Townsville to be, believing everyone has the right to hope for an abundant and healthy life physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually. YWAM works in partnership and by invitation through Australia and Papua New Guinea.

 

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School Seminars

Our school seminar programs are designed to empower and motivate youth to live full and productive lives. Book these engaging and interactive seminars to strengthen your young people. 

 

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Youth Adventures

Youth Adventures is the ultimate service based learning opportunity for young people. We do all the work for your school or youth group so you can do the mission!

 

Pre-Register for Impact Summer 2024

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Impact Summer

Make an Impact during your Summer as you engage in epic adventure, learning and serving. 

Gain valuable skills through hands-on learning experiences at The Stable and the new YWAM Precinct, complete with hiropes and rock climbing wall.

 

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VET in Schools

Vocational education is one of the best ways for young people to explore their passions and get equipped. We offer several registered training programs for youth. In addition to all of the expected elements of a training program, our courses have an emphasis on building good character and the soft skills needed to be employable, while also giving students the chance to practice their skills within our organisation. 

 


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Adventure Based Learning
Adventure based learning programs are complete with a high, medium, and low ropes course, cafe, and multi-purpose youth space to run programs with a ‘learn by doing’ and ‘challenge by choice’ philosophy.
 

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Precinct Cafe

Help build healthy lives and communities in Australia and Papua New Guinea while dining at the YWAM Precinct Cafe

YWAM Precinct Cafe is a not-for-profit cafe located at 312 Walker Street in Townsville’s CBD.

 


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Dental Trailer

YWAM Medical Ships is now operating a Dental Trailer in collaboration with key stakeholders in Port Moresby with the purpose of providing dental services, training opportunities, and health education to schools in the National Capital District.

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Small Boat Patrol Outreaches

YWAM Medical Ships is collaborating with key stakeholders in the nation by utilising small boats to bring health and training services right to the doorstep of those who need it most. These patrols have a specific focus on empowering the youth of communities to live healthy lives to contribute to a healthy nation.

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Ship Outreaches

YWAM Medical Ships - Australia & PNG has been operating medical and training vessels in PNG since 2010.

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Our Footprint

Delivering basic services in Papua New Guinea (PNG) poses enormous challenges with 84 percent of the population living in remote, rural areas.

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Annual Reports

Read or download our annual reports. 

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Advocate

Join the YWAM Medical Ships team by becoming a Community Ambassador or Youth Ambassador in your local community.

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Mission Build
Mission Building is a volunteer program that gives you the opportunity to experience life at our campus all while supporting our work in Australia and PNG. Join us for two weeks to three months at a time that suits you!
 
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Youth Adventures
Youth Adventures is the ultimate service based learning opportunity for young people. We do all the work for your school or youth group so you can do the mission!