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February 2014 News

From Toowoomba to Thailand

  • Written by  Jess Everingham
he YWAM Toowoomba team taking in the sights of Thailand Photo: Provided

Teaching English. Painting. Talking to Thai sex workers. It was all in a day’s work for YWAM Toowoomba’s latest outreach team, lead by 19-year-old Jared Murti.

Jared’s group spent seven weeks in Thailand, before returning home in December.

“It was a life-changing experience, to say the least,” he said.

The group mainly worked in two Thai cities; Chiang Mai and Korat.

In Chiang Mai, they helped paint the newly-established Zion Café on the edge of the city’s red light district.

“From the café we sent out groups of three to go out and talk to the girls,” Jared said.

YWAM-ers infiltrated bars and spoke with the working girls there, building relationships and inviting them back to the café for coffee and open mic nights.

YWAM is just one organisation that sends volunteers to the Zion Cafe, which ministers to sex workers year-round.

The group then taught English in Korat, where Jared says there’s an “interesting” deal in place with the government.

Thailand is a deeply Buddhist country, but Jared said English is an expensive language to learn. So the missionaries have agreed to teach it for free - as long as they’re allowed to preach!

Jared said one of the best parts of the trip was seeing the development of the volunteers - including himself.

“You can love people as much as you want, but unless it’s out of the love God’s shown you, it’s not really going to resound with them.’

Jared encouraged anyone considering YWAM’s DTS, which concludes with the Thailand trip, to take the plunge.

“It’s a really great experience,” he said. “It brings you closer to God and gives you a perspective on life.”

He plans to lead another Thailand trip later this year.

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