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Family Camp for Marginalised residents

Your donations at work (mid year update)

10 Volunteer leaders and 82 people attended a weekend at Norval in Halls Gap, ages ranging from 1 to 78 years and of many different cultures (Sudanese, Chinese and indigenous backgrounds).  The camp has brought many neighbours together to accept and respect each different way of life.

“Every family cooked and fed their own children.  The 4 sudanese families however, chose to cook and combine their food to share among the families.  On Saturday evening their children lined up to receive their evening meals, when they finished all the children from the other families joined in to line up for the food the Sudanese mums had left over.  This was such a beautiful experience to see.The weather was warm, so everyone shared  swimming in the pool, this was enjoyed by all the people who came there was a shared responsibility among the adults to supervise and help look after the younger children in the pool.  This was an example of the cooperation and caring for one another at this holiday camp.

Providing a community camp for families from the Wendouree West area who would otherwise never have the opportunity.


The Exodus Community was established in 2004, members of the Wendouree West Exodus Community strive to journey with the marginalized people of Wendouree West and district, and with each other, listening deeply to the needs of these people.

Activities include
  • Drop-in every Saturday for free light lunch.
  • Home visits with isolated and lonely people.
  • Developing Leadership training.
  • Children’s Activities.
  • After School Learning Program.
  • Drama – (Exodus Players).
  • Family Camp.

The Families who are involved are low income and marginalized with physical and emotional backgrounds.  They include refugees from Sudan who are lonely and isolated away from their extended families.


These people are invited to the annual camp as a way to come together, to share meals and work together, to cook and clean up, get out of their isolated homes, have fun and just enjoy each others company.  They go walking in the bush where the people and children learn to appreciate and respect the natural feeling of the bush and the environment.  They play sports like cricket, basketball, tennis and go swimming in the pool.
They make lasting friendships and the children give a concert for the adults on the last evening, they practice all weekend for this special concert.  This is a NO Alcohol, NO Television weekend so that the people can discover that you can enjoy life without these things.  All participants have such a great time and talk about their experience for months afterwards.

A small contribution from attendees is required  $30 for singles, $40 for couples and $50 for families and they all provide their own food which they like to share with each other too.  Ballarat Grammar College, provide their large bus and driver to transport people to and from the camp, also their mini bus for the use at the camp for 4 days.  Yuille Park Primary School also provide use of their mini bus for a small fee.


The funding we provide for this program is generated from Workplace Giving programs.

This organisation has received funding from United Way Ballarat in the following years:

2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014


Banner photo:  Judith Buchanan




United Way Ballarat is working to advance the common good of our community by focusing on Education, Income and Health.  These are the building blocks for a good life—a quality education that leads to a stable job, enough income to support a family through retirement, and good health.  United Way Ballarat asks all the citizens of Ballarat and surrounding areas to do three things: GIVE – money and goods; ADVOCATE – on behalf of those who cannot; and VOLUNTEER – to invest time in our community More about United Way Ballarat


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