Travelling Team Members spend 4 of their 6 weeks on a Team of 2 to 4 people, visiting various churches and communities across Canada, leading Day Camps for children between the ages of 4 and 12. In each location the Team works with the Clergy, Coordinator and Local Team to run the Day Camp. The Travelling Team acts as leaders for both the children and the Local Community.
Prior to these 4 weeks, 2 weeks are spent in Training. The first of the Training weeks is done in a Day Camp setting, in large teams of 6-8, under the leadership of a Training Team Leader. The second week of Training is in a Retreat setting, where every aspect of the Program and other, more general childcare topics, are thoroughly discussed. The six weeks of Day Camps fly by, filled with fun, travel, fellowship and best of all a sense of having accomplished amazing things for God!
Anyone who is 15 years or older can apply to be become a member of the Travelling Teams.
In many ways this first week is a sort of trial by fire. Travelling Team members are thrown in at the deep end. Some have participated in Day Camps before as campers, but many, especially those from abroad, haven't even seen the program until they get there. Immediately they are expected to jump in and learn it. The Training Team Leader and others provide ample support to make it through this week. People volunteer for bits as things go along, with the encouragement of the Team Leader to ensure that everybody gets to participate in every part of the program.
Week 2: The Training Retreat:- Having experienced Day Camps in the first week, the second week is spent reviewing the program and learning theory behind it. Training in aspects of working with a Team, child discipline and being billeted is also included. The week is spent at a Retreat Centre, the Isaiah 40 Foundation. Workshops are led by experienced Team Members, Coordinators, Clergy, Directors and many others. Often those who write the chapters of the manual being discussed are present to explain the theory behind it.
|The "Lamb" workshop|
The Retreat is also filled with opportunities for individual spiritual growth. Each day, Team Members meet in small groups to discuss a passage from the Bible. There is also a scheduled quiet time every morning to encourage individuals to study and pray on their own.Each evening, informal Worship is organised by small groups. This is an opportunity for Prayer, songs of Praise, sharing passages from Scripture together and listening to a Speaker who focuses on the daily theme from the Day Camp program.
Quotes from Team Members at the end of the Retreat Week
"I've been able to recharge, refuel, be buoyed up by communal prayer. I've been able to form a bond with my Team. I've learned new techniques, have had things explained that I had questions about."
"It was good to be able to visualize what was being said in the workshops having already done the Training Week."
"The workshops were informative, therefore questions that may come up have been answered."
"Being with fellow Christians tends to boost my spirits."
"This week has really changed my perception of things. Thanks to this week, I was able to talk about my faith with other adolescents who see and believe in the same things I do (with regards to God). I have renewed my faith in Him through these wonderful people."
"My life was and is always in God's hands. I found that this week really helped me connect with my sister through prayer, and through the will of God. It was the worship that I enjoyed the most because the constant prayer after was helpful."
"This past week has been quite challenging for me. Not having a Team Leader was really difficult. Sometimes it felt as if I was doing all the work. I understand the difficulties, though, and appreciated that there were always people to 'stand in.'"
"This week strengthened my faith and challenged my pride, both good things. I'm glad for the opportunity, before going out, to think about how Jesus challenges me, to follow Him with faith, not having to ask Him for so much for myself because he knows what I need and will provide it, but to ask for great things for the work He is doing."
"This week really challenged me. I am not usually a very open person about many thing, but this past week I felt God calling me to be more open with the people around me. I also struggled because I have a hard time admitting I'm afraid, even to myself. Again, God made me realize how important it is to tell Him everything, pray about everything. I often forget to do this when my life gets busy."
"This week has encouraged me and given me greater confidence in my future through the Lord. The speakers were good at giving good, positive messages, being realistic to the fact that it will be hard at times. This week has been more tense than enjoyable but that has made me more eager to get our and do the Camps and to try and to them really well."
Travel while 'on Team' is taken care of by Crosstalk Ministries and the individual parishes and dioceses in which you will be working. Travel to and from Montreal at the beginning and end of your time here is your own responsibility. You will be met at Montreal's Pierre Elliot Trudeau airport or the train or bus depot upon arrival.
Some Teams will travel to New Brunswick, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, while some Teams will travel around parts of Montreal, Eastern Townships, and the Laurentians. Teams have travelled by all forms of transport, which have included jets, trains, boats, small cars, and long distance buses.
For those from Abroad
Canada is 5,156.80 km (3,223 miles) wide and is divided into 10 provinces and 3 territories. If you plan to stay on for our Senior & Junior Camps and Focus Weekend you will still have almost two full weeks between activities in which to explore.
Visitors to Canada require a passport for entry. Canadian electricity is supplied at 110 volts. All Team members are required to carry an International Student Card. This card is necessary for purchasing bus, train & airline tickets at a student rate, while travelling in the U.S. & Canada.
For five of the six weeks you are on Day Camps you will live with a family, couple or individual in their house. It is expected that during that time you will attempt to become as much 'a part of the family' as you can. For the other week you will be staying at a Retreat Centre, the Isaiah 40 Foundation, for Residential Training. All the Travelling Team Members spend this week together, getting to know each other and the program. Food at Residential is very good and the rooms are spacious.
|Bedroom at Isaiah 40 Foundation.|
You will spend times enjoying yourself in evenings and on Saturdays (these are your times off) with billets, travelling and local teams. It is suggested that at least half your evenings are spent with your billets, getting to know them. This may take the form of a quiet night at home or an evening out. The local helpers and Travelling Team will often do something as a group one evening, which is good for bonding the two teams together.
Finally, your Travelling Team Members, with whom you are likely to become quite close to over the six weeks, will also want to do something together. You are responsible for your own financial needs, although, while on Day Camps you will not need to pay for transportation, accommodation or food (unless you choose to go out for a fancy meal).