Dave and Denise (Maori descent) Tims live in Randwick Park, Manurewa, South Auckland NZ. Dave (trained Primary School Teacher and Counsellor) and Denise (trained Primary School Teacher) have served for over 20 years with Youth for Christ, Te Ora Hou and then Incedo (all ministries closely related with YFC) and have been caregivers with CYPFS and the Open Home Foundation before they joined UNOH in 2009.
“People like you, don’t move into streets like that”, said the real estate agent. Street gangs, graffiti, violence, drugs were the old narrative that belonged to Randwick Park, Manurewa. If a certain narrative is repeated, it is reinforced. Words create worlds.
In an attempt to change the narrative of Randwick Park, D&D began looking for heroes, for local people who were doing good. What they found was an abundance of amazing people concerned about what was going on in their neighbourhoods; for the state of the parks, for young people and for the problems of alcohol abuse and domestic violence.
On this journey D&D have met some incredible people who share a common concern and have pulled together. They believe in the cause and that life can be different. They are changing the narrative and living out our saying; “Become the change you want to see in the hood.” No matter what the narrative or story, there is goodness in any neighbourhood and in every person. Words create Worlds. Business suit or gang patch, it doesn’t matter. Each one of us has something good about us, and that goodness, once acknowledged and shared, can change the world.
Our role, UNOH’s role, is to see the ‘God-image’ in every person, to name that image and to encourage that image to find a space and place to be expressed. Its in this expression that God’s Kingdom celebrated and connection to each other, to Christ and to our land, is made.