The New Year is a great opportunity to start supporting, or preparing to support a small project. Small projects are just smaller components of the projects that you support. They’re perfect if you want to make a bigger donation than most Gifts of Love, or would like to help raise funds with your friends. They are usually valued at somewhere between $500 and $2500, so it’s a great goal for a church group. If you would like to adopt a small project for 2018, call Pam today on 1800 537 767.
The Peninsula Support Group (pictured above) committed to supporting six small projects in 2017. I spoke with John Govan, the group’s treasurer. Since our conversation, the group reached their massive $11,695 goal.
Why did you first start raising money for small projects?
My brother-in-law had been a State Representative for The Leprosy Mission in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. My wife and I always had an interest in the work of The Leprosy Mission. But in 2004 we went to Nepal with then CEO Graham Peck and a group of supporters. We saw the work that was happening there and we got to meet people affected by leprosy. We came back with an even stronger interest and joined the Support Group of Mt Eliza. When you’ve been there and given the people a hug, and seen their situation. It’s very hard to come home and forget about them. That’s what keep us going really. People are really concerned for people affected by leprosy, and I get quite humbled at times. Sometimes people who are obviously not in good financial situations, what they’re prepared to do for the work is humbling.
How long have you been with the Peninsula Support Group?
We started off meeting at Saint James the Less church in Mt Eliza. When they were undergoing some building modifications we moved to the Frankston Uniting church. We then thought it would be a good idea to move around the Peninsula to get more people involved. We’ve had meetings in Baxter, Somerville, Dromana, Rosebud, Cranbourne, Hastings, amongst others. Some of them are more successful, but we’re just trying to get new people interested. If people know you’re more interested in them then getting money from them, you’re more likely to maintain an ongoing relationship with them.
God is faithful. I can testify to that. And if you’re prepared to put your foot forward and go out in faith. I believe the Lord will honour that. I’ve been fundraising for thirteen years, for more than that actually, and we’ve always met our target.
—John Govan, The Peninsula Support Group treasurer
How many people take part in the Peninsula Support Group?
There are 16 members of our group. Though when we put on our events, we can get more than 50.
What sort of events do you organise?
We have a trivia night, we have a curry luncheon. We’ve had a film at the Picture Theatre in Mornington. That was very successful, we more than booked out the cinema and had 53 people come. Lunches seem to get more people in. It’s also good if we can get international speakers… unfortunately Pius wasn’t able to make it to Australia because he wasn’t given a visa.
Your group raise money for many small projects—how does your group select a small project?
At the start of the year we get in touch with Pam Lake. She gives us a list of the small projects. We go through the list and see what we think is appropriate. We put that to the meeting and we try and pick things that are going to be an ongoing benefit to people. Things like training people, diagnosing early stages, housing for people that are disabled because of leprosy, making schools accessible for people with disabilities, building toilets, reconstructive surgery, and this year we’ve helped provide medication to Thailand. This year we selected six small projects. At the start of the year we think “Have we bitten off too much this year?” But God has been faithful. We’ve always met our target. Last year, we went over it actually.
Do you have an encouraging word for people wanting to support a small project?
A lot of people don’t find it easy to fundraise—I’ve always found it difficult. But God is good. God is faithful. I can testify to that. And if you’re prepared to put your foot forward and go out in faith. I believe the Lord will honour that. I’ve been fundraising for thirteen years, for more than that actually, and we’ve always met our target. Even though sometimes it seems insurmountable. We’ve taken on various things over the year, and it’s been wonderful to see the ways that the Lord has honoured that stepping out. Just do it!
If you would like to adopt a small project for 2018, call Pam today on 1800 537 767.