This year’s Kids Camp Out (KCO) marked the 41st KCO in South Australia! This year’s theme focused on creating a welcoming environment for all attendees, “Welcome: A Place to Belong”, and was explored through music, singing, craft, Bible Study and many different camp-out activities! Two extra special highlights for the campers included a visit by Animals Anonymous and a night concert by Dusty Feet Mob from Port Augusta.
Animals Anonymous brought a varied selection of creatures—great and small— to KCO! Some of the favourites were a Mertens’ Water Monitor and a Python that took seven campers to hold it! Everyone loved learning more about God’s amazing creations, and what a fun, hand’s on way to experience them first-hand!
After it got dark, Dusty Feet Mob shared stories with the campers and leaders through dance and song. It was a powerful way of celebrating Aboriginal identity, culture and connection to country while at the same time allowing non-Aboriginal people to grow in understanding and empathy.
The Small Group sessions were a time of exploring how God welcomes us into his family and how, out of that welcome, we are called to welcome others. We looked at three different ways in which Jesus shows God’s welcome of us – through the stories of Jesus’ encounters with Zacchaeus, Mary & Martha and the Samaritan woman at the well.
Matthew (aged 9) said that he loved the band and the songs (especially ‘Great Big God’) and also learnt that Jesus often did things that were unexpected, like speaking to the Samaritan woman at the well. Exploring this story he understood that Jesus did things that people asked him to, but through exploring this story understood that Jesus often did the unexpected. Matthew then shared that knowing this now makes the Bible that much more amazing—that God has a bigger plan than we think and we are included in it.
Hannah (aged 11) loved the cultural experience session with Sam Chan, learning about the communal nature of many non-Western cultures and how we can show our welcome to those of a different culture (although she says she still didn’t want to eat the chicken feet).
This years’ 405 campers and leaders from 30 congregations want to say, “Thank you, UC Invest investors, for helping to make this camp a reality!”