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Australia: Nungalinya update

June 2017

ABM is proud to support the Nungalinya Theological College, which is intrumental in providing quality education and life skills training to communities in Arnhem Land and the islands of the Gulf of Carpentaria. 

One of the many exciting stories coming out of Nungalinya is that of Galvin and his wife Ernestine.

For the last two years, this young couple have studied at the college, beginning in the preliminary level of the Certificate I in Education and Skills Development. Ernestine displayed strong capabilities within the classroom from the beginning, having achieved a good level of literacy in school, but Galvin struggled. He had an extremely low level of literacy, which hampered his efforts.

As he worked through the preliminary level, small improvements could be seen. When the course was finished, it was obvious to the college staff that Ernestine was more than ready to progress into the advanced level of Certificate I, but there were still doubts as to Galvin’s readiness. To help strengthen his chances of success, his teachers gave him some homework to complete, and encouraged him to read every day.

Galvin was determined, and he followed their advice and instruction diligently.

In 2016, the couple progressed into the advanced level of Certificate I, and Galvin continued to make steady gains. Along with the rest of their class, they enjoyed the integrated teaching model in this course, based on the theme of Paul’s Missionary journey. The units focus on this theme, with students imagining they are going on a missionary journey to the communities represented in the class. This uses many different numeracy skills to calculate distance, costs, and budgets as well as literacy and oral communication.

At the end of the year, Galvin and Ernestine finished Term 4 and graduated. It was a wonderful moment for all the staff and students to see Galvin stand up in chapel and read his testimony in front of the whole congregation.

Full of hope for the future, Galvin is now continuing his studies with the Certificate III in Christian Ministry and Theology.


This is just one of many stories of trial and triumph at Nungalinya. The college staff complied some wonderful quotes from the 15 students graduating in 2016, outlining their experiences and hopes for the future. As you read, we encourage you to pray for all students, that God’s perfect will be outworked in their lives.

 “Nungalinya is a good place to learn the Jesus message and also how to be a strong leader. This will help me when I go back to church in my community.”

“My time at Nungalinya has made my reading skills stronger, shown me that dramas are a good way to teach and that it is important to respect those around you.”

“At Nungalinya, I have learnt that God unites us all. I have enjoyed meeting new people and learning things about their lives.”


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