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The group had learnt that one in five adults in Australia, and one in four young adults, experience mental illness at some point in their lives. At that time, Nambour Hospital also housed the only in-patient mental health unit in the region.
“God chose to provoke a number of local church members to respond in some way, and as a result, Coffee Chaplaincy was born,” Coffee Chaplaincy Team Leader Kevin Hamer said.
Since its inception, approximately 40,000 free cups of coffee have been served to people within mental health services on the Sunshine Coast.
“While this number sounds impressive, the real story is that approximately 40,000 moments of warmth, welcome and love have been given to people within these services,” Kevin said.
The coffee chaplains believe that through warm hospitality, and sincere presence, God can bring a sense of peace, love and light to those who at that time, are experiencing a sense of darkness.
“Coffee chaplaincy has expanded across the Sunshine Coast and now serves in the new Sunshine Coast University Hospital, and the Mountain Creek Continuing Care Unit. Both of these additions were at the invitation of Queensland Health staff.”
There are now 56 coffee chaplains serving in nine teams across three locations. While the team of volunteers come from various churches and denominations on the coast, Churches of Christ in Queensland provide the volunteer framework and cover for this ministry to happen.
“The DNA of Churches of Christ has always been to work with people in peace for the sake of sharing the good news of Jesus, and Coffee Chaplains is a very real expression of how this DNA continues to enable opportunity for the light of Christ to be radiated into dark places,” he said.
Find out more about our recent endeavours in the latest edition of Networking.