Scripture Union South Africa Response to COVID-19

The world is facing a global challenge that is unprecedented. President Ramaphosa, in recognition of this global emergency, has outlined a set of instructions to guide us as a Nation through this time. These guidelines provide an important framework for the mission of SU during this season. We recognize that we are a relational ministry serving young people and churches, activities that are deeply impacted by the pandemic as defined before us. But we have guidelines by which we wish to operate in the near term, framed by President Ramaphosa, around our care for SU staff and the children and churches that we serve.


The health of all of our stakeholders is critically important to us. This concern impacts our office staffing and behaviour, activities scheduled for children and gatherings, and events, at least in the short term. We will seriously engage sanitation and hygiene standards in all SU offices by:

  • Implementing comprehensive Hygiene and Sanitary Protocols at our Facilities and with all who enter or use our premises.
  • Requesting that all Staff, Beneficiaries and Stakeholders (including Service Providers) Self-Isolate or Self-Quarantine for the minimum required periods should they:
    • Present any Flu (Influenza) type symptoms;
    • Present any COVID-19 symptoms;
    • Have travelled out of the Republic of South Africa in the last 30 Days;
    • Have had contact with someone who has travelled out of the Republic of South Africa in the last 30 Days;
    • Have had contact with someone who has been medically confirmed to have contracted the COVID-19 virus.

Schedules will be significantly challenged. We will make decisions over the coming months in ways that will seek to provide healthy engagement, stopping camps and face to face interaction where necessary according to established guidelines while recognizing that during this crisis some children will be at risk. SU will hold this tension, being led by established protocol and God’s Spirit.


SU has a mandate to ‘enable young people to know and walk with God,’ a mandate that we take very seriously. Our current crisis means that we must be creative in finding ways to continue to serve our Nation’s children. We know that many of the children in South Africa go to bed hungry, a reality that will be increased with schools not in session. This is a deep concern. There is a tension in making sure that we don’t increase the opportunity for greater COVID-19 exposure for SU staff and children, balanced by the real physical needs of the children in our communities. We will not abandon these children and will continue to think and act carefully around what it means for us to serve them in this time.


We serve a Creator God who remains on the throne and cares about the needs of His people. He is not aloof, but is fully engaged with us in our situation. We will cry out to Him as His people and ask that He brings to a halt the ravaging impact of the virus on our Nation and the world. We will seek Him, knowing that He hears us. We will pray for His will for us at this time, knowing that He is trustworthy and kind. We will not be afraid because He is sovereign over what He has created—even a virus—and He loves us.

We admit that we do not know what the future holds, but we trust the One who holds the future and will lean into Him.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us by email.

Tim Black
General Director

Anthony Ryan

Alan Pitt
Operations Director