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30 July - 12 August 2017
Greetings from the wilds of Scotland!
The weather has cooperated enough to allow set up to go smoothly. Thanks be to God because the rest of Scotland has had some pretty wet weather lately. As usual people have appeared from far and wide, Switzerland, USA and Germany to name but a few. They have worked like Trojans and we are in good shape for the start of camp.
Yes, we have had the usual comparatively minor issues to deal with, such as digging trenches to drain the marquee after a sudden and heavy down pour yesterday morning, but through it all we are encouraged because we see the hand of God working alongside us in a very real way. When we are weak we are able to see just how strong He is.
The low that is circling the north west of the UK over the next few days could prove to be challenging for everyone as they arrive and attempt to set up. Psalms 57 says ďI will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed,Ē so we will remain optimistic, moving forward in faith whilst keeping the wellies and waterproofs close to hand.
Please pray that we will resolve the last few staffing issues and that all will travel safely to camp.
The latest numbers for camp this year are 88 campers, 30 mini campers, 12 creche (where have all those babies come from?) and around 100-110 staff members each week.
We are doing a good work here. God is touching the lives of many young and older people and changing them for the better. We are strengthened and heartened by all your prayers and support. We really do feel it and know the vital part you all are playing, so thank you.
SEP is fast approaching and things are well underway for camp itself and our 50th celebration. Camper numbers are slowly creeping up but as is usual there are quite a few changes with some campers changing their mind about coming (thankfully not too many) and others deciding at the last minute that they do want to come after all.
We have had a few last-minute changes to our staffing as well and we find ourselves down three male dorm leaders. So, if you know of anyone please encourage them to apply. It is not too late. We are still looking for help in sailing as well. Please keep SEP in your prayers and in particular those working hard behind the scenes. We are confident that God will bless SEP and give all those who come a summer to remember.
Only seven weeks to until SEP 2017, the 50th year of SEP in the UK.
The good news: we have all the dorm leaders we need, which is a very good position to be in at this stage.
The bad news: thereís none! As far as camper numbers goes, we have 74 at the moment, which again is good for this time of year, but we have plenty of room for more and SEP is such a great experience and opportunity for our young people. So Iíd like to ask you all to go out into the highways and byways and find more! Parents, encourage your kids to take the plunge and sign up for what is sure to be a landmark year for SEP. Campers who already have a place, why not consider asking a friend or friends to come with you. The more the merrier. You can apply online here.
And now for the ugly. Weíre still looking for staff to serve in some of the less glamorous areas of camp like washup, marquee and toilet cleaning. Itís true that staff are expected to support these areas by signing up to the rotas, but in order to keep camp working smoothly, we also need some heroes volunteering full time. It takes a big heart and a real serving attitude to give up two weeks of your holidays to clean up after everyone else, but these roles are crucial to the success of SEP.
Also a note to all campers. Last year we gave every camper a tin and asked them to fundraise for SEP by saving their silver. Donít forget to bring the coins youíve saved all year to camp this year and letís see who managed to save the most.
Finally, SEP would not succeed without the prayers of its many supporters. We very much need and appreciate your continuing prayers for the successful planning and preparation of camp, for the weather and for more campers to join us for an awesome experience on the banks of Loch Lomond.
I am delighted to tell you our plans for SEP 2017 are going well.
We already have just under a hundred staff applications and around 60 campers, so we are beginning to feel the excitement build. The site preparations are underway, and this week we are starting to contact staff to provisionally give them their roles for camp. We still need quite a bit of help for set up and or take down so if you can help please go online and fill in an application and weíll see you there.
Although staff applications are coming in thick and fast and we may need to start a waiting list soon, we still need volunteers for sailing and for the service areas, especially dishwashing. We are also looking for suitably qualified people for First Aid for the first week so if you are that person or know of someone, please encourage them to help us out. It is going to be a memorable camp so make sure you donít miss it.
The 50th anniversary planning for the middle Saturday is taking shape and it sounds like it will be a fun filled, busy day but we really need good weather for it to go well. It is of course Scotland so anything is possible, letís just pray the sun shines.
Our theme for this yearís camp is 1 John 4:19. We love Him because He first loved us. It is humbling to know just how much God loves us and that he loves us unconditionally. I pray that we get this message to everyone most effectively while at camp, as I know you do too.
A few weeks ago, we announced that, as 2017 is the 50th year of SEP, we are planning a special event during camp to celebrate this fantastic achievement. This will take the form of a funfair and Ceilidh on the middle Saturday (5th August) which will be open to all. As we are anticipating a high demand, the event will be by ticket only. The ticket price, which includes a snack lunch and dinner, is £15 for adults and £5 for children. Family tickets are also available at £40 for two adults and more than two children. Tickets will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
If you would like to attend, please apply for your tickets to Rachel Swinney: firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, a note for all prospective campers; the early bird discount cut-off date is the end of this month. If you haven't submitted your application yet, please do so before Sunday 30th of April to get the £50 discount. You can apply online here
Finally, SEP would not succeed without the prayers of its many supporters, we would greatly appreciate your continuing prayers for the successful planning and preparation of camp in this milestone year.
Plans for SEP 2017 are going well. At the end of February, we held the second of two meetings with a cross section of SEP staff and supporters with the purpose of updating the SEP vision and values to make them more relevant to staff and campers alike.
We are also urgently looking for male and female dorm leaders, so if you can serve in this respect, please submit your application as soon as possible at sepuk.org.
Also a reminder that 2017 is the 50th year of SEP and we are planning a special event during camp to celebrate this fantastic achievement. This will take the form of a funfair and Ceilidh on the middle Saturday (5th August) which will be open to all. As we are anticipating a high demand, the event will be by ticket only. Tickets will be allocated on a first-come first serve basis, so please watch out for an announcement containing further details soon.
SEP would not succeed without the prayers of its many supporters, so please continue to pray for the planning and preparation of camp in this milestone year.
SEP is a two-week Christian Summer Camp run by Gracecom. It takes place each year on the banks of Loch Lomond in Scotland, generally during the last week of July and the first week of August It is a tented camp and although run by Gracecom is open to teenagers of any denomination.
It exists to:
- assist teens as they come to understand and grow in a relationship with God and His Son, Jesus Christ.
to encourage teens to pursue the Christian way of life.
to promote an enjoyable and responsible experience of sporting, recreational and social activity in the rugged environment of Loch Lomond in Scotland It seeks to achieve these aims through the positive teaching, loving relationships and Christian example of all the SEP staff.
We define this as a Christ-centred environment.
SEP 2016 has come and gone in a flurry of campers, staff, fun activities, midges and, for once, not too much mud! We had a great camp this year with seven successive days of dry weather, something almost unheard of and a welcome relief after last year.
We also had a super bunch of campers; 87 in all. Not quite the ten percent increase over last year that weíd hoped for but it gives us something to build on next year as we celebrate the 50th year of SEP. All campers received a goodie bag as they left, containing flyers promoting next yearís camp to hand out to friends, a tin to save their silver for SEP and a Moleskin notebook with next yearís date advertised on the front in which they wrote farewell messages to each other.
We had a taster day at camp this year where we had a mini bus full of children visiting for the day to try out some of the activities to see if they would like to come next year as campers. By all accounts it was a successful day and we hope to continue to do this in the future.
We also had three new activities this year, Social Media, Rocket Building (with noncombustive water powered rockets) and Salsa dancing, which were all a big hit. For the Ceilidh on Saturday night we had a live band and the haggis was well and truly addressed to Rabbie Burnís Ode to a Haggis, with much enthusiasm and lots of laughs.
Before the end of camp, we had arranged to get the dates for SEP 2017 up on the website, along with the 2017 application forms. As a result, camper and staff applications are already coming in thick and fast (10 of each as I write this article) so if you are thinking you would like be a part of next yearís camp, please apply early so you are not disappointed. The new online application makes things easier all round and we would like to encourage everyone to pay online too as it saves many man hours chasing fees and counting money.
As the takedown crew tidy away the last few items into the barn this week and the field returns to normal, it is difficult to picture the thriving community that was there just a few days ago, but we have our memories and witnessed the changes we saw in the campers and staff alike. The profound impact SEP has on all of those who attend is truly life changing and it is a great witness to our loving Father in heaven.
Thank you to everyone for their prayers and support of SEP, and, above all, thanks for our loving Father for the gospel opportunity that is SEP.
Last updated: 28 July 2017 17:28 by JaiWeb Services
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