Ordinarily yes. It is a major adjustment to change churches, and we prefer that you stay in this familiar environment. However, if there is a special reason this is not possible, we will consider applicants who wish to serve in a different church.
If you decide you’d like to move to Sydney for the year (we’d rather recommend the ‘Block mode’, but some past students have opted to do this), then we can help you find a great church to commit to for the year.
Under normal circumstances, we don’t regard Year 13 students to be employees of the church or school. It is a ministry placement, and so you should think of yourself as a work-experience student. There are lots of issues around being considered an “employee”, so we don’t encourage churches or schools to provide a formal salary or pay.
That said, we strongly encourage churches and schools to support Year 13 students as much as they are able. Many churches or schools in the past have decided to make a contribution towards the student’s tuition and training, depending on their resources and the needs of the student. We also strongly encourage churches to assist and support students in their Fiji fundraising efforts.
Even if you don’t need the money, we still think that the world of work is an essential part of your Year 13 experience (and of life!), so we encourage all students to find some form of part-time work.
Normally, Year 13 students who receive little or no financial support from church or family will need to work one or two days per week. Some students may also choose to work during term breaks, and in the months before and after the program – a great thing to do. Alternatively, students may choose to do the Block mode in order to work several days per week, if required.
One ‘official’ day off per week is fine for most students, provided there is also other informal recreational time during the week. Continuous students are also given time off between terms, as well as before and after the Fiji mission.
However, if the demands of their ministry placement or work become too onerous, students may negotiate an additional day off during the week.
Year 13 allowed me to grow in the safety of strong Christian relationships, and the skills it gave me grew my confidence and opened my eyes to ways that I could serve. I feel so much more involved in my church community because of Year 13.Mikaela Bower, 2012