Ben Walton has served for 2 years as an intern on our Children's team and as a Schools Outreach Worker and has been involved in Leeds Faith in Schools projects. Now at the end of his time at St George's Ben shares his experiences with us:
"It was this first stage in my story, sat on the hard floor in Infants school, that gave me the passion to do schools work with St George's. Having seen the difference it made to me, I wanted to pass that message on..."
How did you become a Christian? For me, the process of becoming a Christian probably began at the age of 4. I was sitting in one of my first school assemblies and some people came in from the local church to tell us the story of Noah's Ark. When I got home that day, I told my parents that I had decided I wanted to go to church and we've been regularly ever since. Aged 9, I was given the opportunity to go to a CYFA camp in Cornwall and I have continued going on the same camp every year since. At this camp in about 2002, I first remember praying that I would give my life to Jesus.
What have you enjoyed about your internship? It was this first stage in my story, sat on the hard floor in Infants school, that gave me the passion to do schools work with St George's. Having seen the difference it made to me, I wanted to pass that message on during my time working here. In the last two years, I've been involved in lunchtime clubs, visits from schools to both Wrangthorn and St George's and some after school clubs which have all helped to spread the Christian message to a variety of school students.
My personal highlight of the last year was working with Leeds Faith in Schools to help to run a prayer room in City of Leeds School. We had some incredible experiences throughout the week of giving away Bibles, talking to students about prayer and offering to pray with them. We're still having conversations with them when we go in for lunchtime clubs that have come as a result of that week, but the really inspiring part was getting to pray with the head teacher after the event and sharing some of the stories with her.
"The internship has taught me a lot about the value of good relationships both with other people and with God which enable you to work with integrity and in a Godly way."
What have you learned over the last two years? The experience over the last couple of years has prepared me hugely for next year, when I will be moving to Nottingham to begin a Secondary PGCE. Alongside practical knowledge of working with children and young people, the internship has taught me a lot about the value of good relationships both with other people and with God which enable you to work with integrity and in a Godly way.
What’s next for you? As I get ready to move on, I'm very sad to be leaving the school's work and work with Explorers here at St George's. I feel like I've built up a lot of valuable relationships with children and parents that have been very important to me, but I'm looking forward to all the exciting things that life has in store over the years to come.