Local teen to undertake missionary work internationally

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Ever since she was seven-years-old, Sophie Watson has wanted to perform missionary work.

Now 18-years-old, Watson will get an opportunity to do just that.

Watson will be headed on a five-month missionary trip later this year through the program Youth on a Mission (YWAM) with the first three months being training in New Zealand before they head out for a two-month humanitarian trip. The destination for the latter two months is not yet known as Watson won’t find out until she gets to New Zealand but she expects it to be somewhere in Asia.

“I’m very excited,” said Watson, who will be gone from July 18-Dec. 7. “I’m nervous but I’m also very excited. I’ve been looking forward to this and I want to go out and give it my best and help people.”

Noting she is a Christian, Watson said she wants to help people “as Jesus did.

“I’d like to go out and help people as best I can,” she continued.

Eighteen-year-old Sophie Watson is heading on a missions trip to New Zealand and another location to be determined, likely Asia, later this year. She is holding a fundraising pasta dinner at Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 April 7.

Eighteen-year-old Sophie Watson is heading on a missions trip to New Zealand and another location to be determined, likely Asia, later this year. She is holding a fundraising pasta dinner at Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 April 7.

Her uncle went to China on a humanitarian mission when she was young and that sparked her interest in doing it herself.

“I just had a dream,” she said. “It’s really very exciting for me.”

Watson estimated there will be about 20 people as part of the team and that they will be going as a team to whatever nation they are assigned to once they complete their training in New Zealand.

Watson has been raising money the last two summers through her jobs as well as speaking to groups, including a group of senators and MP’s that were colleagues of her father Jeff. She said she inherited her work ethic from her parents.

“I know the value of a dollar,” said Watson.

The trip will cost the 18-year-old Amherstburg resident approximately $15,000. Watson’s mother Sarah said a lot of that will be covered by Sophie’s savings, but there is a fundraising pasta dinner being held at Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 April 7. They hope to raise an additional $7,500 with the hope the dinner can cover part of that.

Sarah said Sophie has had a generous side to her for her entire life, recalling a trip to McDonald’s when Sophie was young with Sophie reading a Ronald McDonald House flyer then emptying her coin purse to donate.

“She is both generous and others-minded,” added Jeff. “I routinely see her empty her wallet to help people and volunteer to help people in need without being asked. I have seen her literally give the coat off of her back to help people.”

The eldest Watson child plans on continuing helping people upon her return. She will apply to the paramedic program at St. Clair College in January and also hopes to perform humanitarian missions during disaster relief efforts overseas.

For more information on the April 7 pasta dinner, search “Sophie Watson Mission Fundraiser” on Facebook or e-mail sophiewatsonmissionfundraiser@gmail.com. Further information can also be obtained by calling 519-890-1444.

A bank account is in the process of being set up for those who want to make a donation to Watson’s mission trip. It will be at TD Canada Trust.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children 12 and under with a $30 rate for families. There is a gluten-free pasta option available as well. It is recommended that tickets be reserved in advance.

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