Churches in Ottery are hosting an eight-day crusade in a tent on the corner of Hector and Edward roads, from 5pm on Sunday November 27 to Sunday December 4.
They will be offering free counselling and advice, as well as fun and games for young and old.
The “core purpose of this event is to reach out and restore hope” in a community challenged with drug and alcohol abuse.
The outreach, with the theme “God is able tent crusade”, aims to empower youth, men and women so they can “change their lives” for the better.
Pastor Jonathan Africa, of the Omega Family Fellowship church, who is also chairman of the Ottery People Centre (OPC), will be the main speaker who will introduce the three key speakers: Evangelist Llewellyn Simons, Minister Christo Williams and Apostle Benjamin Titus.
Mr Africa said after listening to many mothers and children, he “realised there were many broken-hearted mothers”, whose children are using drugs and alcohol.
The crusade will be a platform to “listen to their needs”.
Mr Williams, who is also the youth leader of Africa Jam, said: “We will be taking turns in speaking to the community every evening from 7pm. We will be talking about change.”
He said former drug and alcohol abusers will share their testimonies about how they changed their lives. “Men and women of all different ages will be taking the stage in a 500-seater tent.”
Mr Williams said the churches made an effort to support each other to make the event a reality.
“The church leaders from the area and outside the area made this possible. And other churches and communities are invited to be a part of this crusade.”
Mr Williams, who grew up in Ottery, said he has spoken to many youth who are going through puberty and who are “confused with their bodies changing from a teenager to an adult”.
“We will speak about how to make decisions in life and making the right choices,” he said.
The younger children will enjoy fun and games and there will be entertainment with live bands, dancing and singing in English, Afrikaans and Xhosa.
“This event will be a service to the community by moving away from the conventional church service. This crusade will appeal to everyone in the community.
“Women who are experiencing stresses of raising their families can come and learn how to deal with stress, while youth can come together and learn about personal development.”
The sessions will start on Sunday at 5pm with a service. From Monday to Saturday, there will be 10am slots for men and women who can come for group counselling as well as individual counselling. Then at 2pm, the youth can hear talks by former drug and alcohol abusers talks and there will be activities of fun and games. At 7.30pm, the three key speakers will give a service to all.
On Sunday, at 5pm, there will be a final service.
Mr Williams encourages peo-ple to take advantage of this opportunity where help will be at hand “for free.
For more information contact Mr Africa on 082 505 6803 or Mr Williams on 073 788 3833.