03 July 2015
‘Growing up, most of us could recall that when we went to big Salvation Army events it changed us,’ said Major Denise Cooper, territorial children’s ministries officer for the United Kingdom Territory with the Republic of Ireland. ‘We want [the children at Boundless] to have that as well.’
At congress it’s all about bringing families together. Parents are invited to bring their children to the Boundless Kids area in between sessions, as needed.
The area has interactive zones that give the children the opportunity to paint a canvas, decorate biscuits, construct a mosaic or make a candle. All activities offered relate to the general themes of Boundless.
The ‘I Think’ zone includes a space for kids to share ideas through conversation cubes or table talk cards, while the ‘I Chill’ zone caters for kids wanting to read a book, colour or play games.
Jordan, aged nine, said her favourite thing was meeting people and working on the mosaic.
‘I really like it because I get to meet new people and do other things that I never got to do before,’ Jordan said. ‘You gotta make sure they’re in the right place,’ she said as she glued tiles to a mosaic.
Aliyah, six, had a different take on her favourite part of Boundless.
‘I have a hotel [and] I get to explore more things and it’s a new place,’ she said.
Aliyah’s mother, Captain Heather Matondo, was glad the sessions had options to hold the children’s attention as well.
‘She’s only six; she has stayed in for the majority of the sessions so far,’ Heather said. ‘There’s been singing. There’s been dancing. There’s been band music. So it’s something that keeps her attention. When we get to the message, having those other elements of interest to her, even at six years old, has been great.’
Elijah,10, has also attended sessions with his family.
‘Well, they’re very creative and very long,’ he said. ‘I actually like the big O2 ….’
Major Cooper explained that the intention of the kids area is for children to journey with their families, so when they go home they can take what they’ve seen and gained and be inspired for the future.
‘We don’t know what they’re taking in, but we know that we made important decisions when we were little so we want to make sure that they have the opportunity to hear the message,’ she said.
Emmanuel, seven, flew from Australia for the big event with his family. When asked how London compared to his hometown, he took some time to think.
‘Really big,’ he said. ‘London is bigger than Australia, I think.’
This article was included in issue four of Boundless Today. Click to read all issues of Boundless Today.