Meet Shona Hubsher, a 24 year-old Registered Nurse from Queensland. Shona began her missions journey in 2011 when she spent time in Bangladesh; it was the first time she had ever seen poverty up close. The experience impacted Shona greatly. She was moved to find opportunities where she could use her nursing skills and compassion to help others.
After an online search, Shona found YWAM Medical Ships – Australia (YWAM MSA) and knew immediately it was the perfect fit for her. Shona signed up for a two-week YWAM outreach in Papua New Guinea as a nurse. She joined the Primary Health Care team administering immunisation and wound care, conducting health promotion, and training for local health workers. Shona shares about the outreach, “You see so many things that you would very rarely see in the developed world – malaria, tuberculosis, tropical ulcers, and fungal skin conditions are common. Others on my team even treated crocodile bites.”
After the outreach, Shona knew her journey with YWAM wasn’t finished; she was hungry for more. “While I was on board the ship, I met students who were on a YWAM Discipleship Training School (DTS). Hearing their stories about how their lives had been changed throughout the course made me a want to do one myself” said Shona.
Shona enrolled in YWAM Townsville’s Ship DTS in 2013. The DTS was life changing for her. “I learnt so many valuable lessons; how much I am loved, how I can harness my potential and embrace the way that I have been created, and how to use that for good. I feel that there is endless possibility for an exciting future.”
During the Ship DTS there is a three-month period spent in Papua New Guinea. In addition to joining a YWAM Medical Ship outreach, Shona and her team ventured into Milne Bay Province where the ship would be visiting for the first time the following year. The team built relationships with local health providers, village leaders and the provincial government while gathering on the ground information in preparation for the ship’s arrival. “Living in the villages gave us the opportunity to experience everyday life in these communities, it showed us just how beautiful, kind and generous the people of Papua New Guinea are” said Shona.
The Ship DTS has shaped Shona’s future in a positive way. “DTS has helped to fuel my passions and facilitated the building of my confidence to pursue what I believe to be my purpose.”
When asked what she would say to someone contemplating doing the Ship DTS she said, “Stop contemplating! Apply now! DTS will change your life. You will learn things about yourself that you never knew and maybe even find you are stronger than what you thought. The Ship DTS is close to my heart because of my passion for nursing, primary health care, health promotion, and public health. The Medical Ship is an incredible ministry that takes a multifaceted approach at meeting the needs of the people it serves.”
Shona will be returning to the YWAM Medical Ship this year as a Primary Health Care clinic leader.