Darlene is the head of chaplaincy and oversees all the PCIR (Pastoral Critical Incident Response) deployments. They have partnerships with the Department of Education and the Department of Community. They contact them for chaplaincy teams to rotate through different evacuation centres around the state. During the Wooroloo fires in early February, PCIR chaplains were deployed to help families who had to evacuate their home. “They needed someone to walk them to registration, sit with them and talk through situations happening for them. Sometimes they needed someone to sit and hang with their children, just support across the board.”
Adrian is one of the PCIR chaplains but also works at Belmont City College. Having spoken to many Primary School chaplains, Kirste and Dan wanted to know the challenges of being a High School chaplain. “One of the challenges for high schools would be social media. But being able to support students through challenges is rewarding.”
Matt is a YouthCARE and PCIR chaplain who was also deployed to help victims of the Wooroloo fires. “We played games with kids. There were families that we were able to work with who had literally lost everything. I was able to walk with them and get them support from each agency that was there.”
Karen who is a chaplain in Wooroloo and Gidgegannup Primary School, where some students and their families were affected by the bushfires. “We go directly into the classroom working with the child or even that face to face. Mostly just keeping an eye on them and leading them through.”
Catch up on some of the chats Kirste and Dan had with the YouthCARE chaplains below.