The year is fast drawing to a close. This is our last blog post for 2011 and we will recommence in February when school returns.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the leaders and helpers for your hard work and dedication in supporting the mums and the children in your communities. I hope your Christmas break-ups have been a chance to reflect on the year and celebrate your successes.
My first year in this role has not been without its challenges, but so much of our personal growth and education comes through being stretched beyond our conscious knowledge and capability, and for that I am grateful. That which has been beyond my skill set, God has graciously provided in the shape of my wonderful Management, Admin and Field Staff teams who have performed their individual roles, capably, responsibly and with great results. Without them MOPS could not run. Their commitment to the ministry of MOPS, equipping of mothers, and the belief that better mums make a better world is truly amazing.
Donna is a wonderful communicator and encourager and has brought many changes in order to improve the level of care and support for MOPS Teams. We now have sixteen Field Staff and 106 MOPS Groups. With our plan to grow to 135 in 2012, we need more Field Staff and the active support of groups to encourage and work with neighbouring churches to commence a group, or to offer to host an Information Day so that new groups can start in your area.
Jillian took on the role of National Conference Manager this year. Her first tasks were to appoint State Convenors and find venues and encourage attendances. This was achieved with a great amount of success with just over 85% of leaders attending in 2011. I hope that you will all support the Conferences and take advantage of the training available to equip you as a leader – our goal is 95% in 2012.
Cath has the responsibility for the all areas of online and print media. This year we produced our first glossy magazine aimed at every mum in every MOPS group around Australia. Better Mum also serves to lift our national profile and provides a way for groups to promote MOPS in their area.
We have also tried to consolidate the online presence of MOPS Australia in order to better serve the needs of our groups. We have upgraded our website, posted articles weekly to our blog, and interacted with mums all over Australia on our facebook page.
Mothers On the March
Sixteen groups joined in this year’s Walkathon. This may have been regarded as a failure rather than a success, but it certainly brought success to many of the groups which participated. Several groups have increased in numbers as a result of the press releases, interviews in newspapers and on radio. From feedback received, we may not have communicated our message as clearly as we could have, however, we will certainly be addressing this in the new year. Please plan to be involved on April 28, 2012.
We moved to a new, larger, more user-friendly office on October 1st, however, our contact details remain the same. This allows for two extra staff and room to grow as an organization. I will have a part-time office assistant from January.
Her amazing office and computer skills will allow me more time to concentrate on the tasks of National Director.
The Board of MOPS Australia
The Board has also been through a transition year, with the resignation of well known and our much loved, Julie Prattis. We are grateful for the foundation she laid and the well-planned and smooth transition into Julie’s position by the very capable Deputy Chair Karen Dickson. MOPS is again in very good hands and poised for a great future. I am also grateful for the hard work and commitment of the entire Board and the support they are to me personally and to MOPS Australia.
Our goal is simple: We are passionate about making MOPS available to every mum. This will only happen as we get more groups started, raise up more leaders with a heart for ministry, and get the message to Ministers that MOPS can help to grow their churches as lives are touched through mums touching the lives of others.
This will require more MOPS Groups:
- We are training and encouraging Field Staff
- Creating more printed promotional materials to get our name out
- Creating a more user friendly website
- Holding a Walkathon to raise awareness
- Production of a Australian promational DVD
We will need Stronger Groups:
- More Leaders – identifying, encouraging and training
- More focused training in identified areas of skills
- More leadership materials on the website
- Leadership Book reviews
- RTD training for remote groups
Remember that you can also start a second group for free, so try a MUMSnext group in your church to minister to the needs of your graduating school age mums.
New Groups for 2011
|February||Northpointe Baptist MUMSnext||ACT|
|Blacktown Baptist MUMSnext||NSW|
|March||Woolloongabba Nazareth Lutheran||QLD|
|April||Merredin Church of Christ||WA|
|May||Merbien Christian Fellowship||VIC|
|October||The Journey Uniting Church||SA|
|Whitfords Church of Christ||WA|
|Stafford Uniting Church MUMSnext||QLD|
|November||Murrumba Downs Lutheran||QLD|
|Clarkson Oceans Church||WA|
|December||Wattle Grove: Faith Community Church||WA|
I pray that Christmas will be a joyful time as you spend it with family and friends and celebrate the birth of our Saviour.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and safe and restful holiday period.