Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Someone asked me to remind them what our room was actually for.
Well we hope it is place that the workers of San Antonio can use and feel at home in.
We offer free internet access to workers, because many of them are not brilliantly paid and it helps them keep in touch with home. We don't want holiday makers to use our internet as that wouldn't be fair on all the internet cafe's that exist.
The xbox and wii zone is so that workers can sit somewhere that is a bit like a living room and have some fun whilst chilling, many of them live in rather cramped accommodation and we want them to have the space to relax.
Our staff also offer practical help, last year we helped people who had lost their passports by referring them to the British consul in Ibiza town, we took people to see police and doctors and helped them with Spanish translation, we also helped people who had had their credit cards stolen or lost their club tickets. We even helped some lads with a problem where one of them ended up in prison, this is primarily the consulates job we just offered support, lifts and more translation. By having our premises people know where to come when they need this kind of support.
This year we will also offer pregnancy tests, sexual health advice, drugs and alcohol advice; all from our premises.
The room is also the ideal base from which our summer street teams can operate.
We feel the most important thing that we offer is the prayer room, we provide a place where people can come and quietly chill and reflect on God. They can say a prayer or just sit and get some peace. last year people sat in the room when stressed, bereaved or just in need of some spiritual focus. Most people who use the room would not call themselves practicing christians, thats okay.
We also use the room for our summer team training times, our daily prayer rhythm and other gatherings. We our hoping to start a small Sunday evening gathering some time this year.
We see the room as a very practical tool with which to serve the community we are part of.
Ibiza, especially San Antonio, has been much maligned over the years. Most people who come here know that what they read in the papers is not true, Ibiza is a beautiful island. San Antonio is a great place for a fun packed holiday, yes people do get messy, there are a lot of drugs on sale but the majority of people coming here don't get in a complete muddle. I think it is worse than the UK for messiness but probably because it is concentrated and people are on holiday. Think of 160 Saturday nights one after the other and thats San Antonio. Personally I love San An, I enjoy living here and working here, hopefully the room will make a difference but more importantly I hope that we as people will make a difference.
The challenge is not to sit back and allow the facility to do the work for us. We could end up with the "come to us" mentality that exists in the christian world when really we are called to "go to them"
Hope that answers the question.
Here's a question: How should we describe the room when telling people about it? I need something succinct, "24-7 ibiza centre" sounds weird, or does it?