Meet the Staff

Jon Berends, Program Director

JON came to Act Five after years spent as a teacher and chaplain in Christian high schools as well as completing a Master’s of Theological Studies from Regent College in Vancouver. Along with these, he brings experience in camp leadership, overseas missions, and coaching, all of which have prepared him to lead this new and exciting project.

Jon is passionate about working with young adults and cannot imagine much that is more exciting than being able to build relationships with and support Act Five students as they live together, travel, canoe, eat, worship, play, bake, and figure out together where God is leading them.

Jon lives in Hamilton with his wife, Aimee, and their two little girls, Rhea and Elise (with one more on the way). They love exploring the city and finding the best coffee shops, waterfalls, and playgrounds. They are eager to open their doors to Act Five’s 2020-2021 cohort!

You can contact Jon directly at or (905) 741-8284.

Nina Drenth, Spiritual Life Facilitator

Nina is excited to be joining the Act Five team for the second year in a row, this time as the Spiritual Life Facilitator. Nina comes to her position with Act Five with experience working for the Greater Ontario House of Prayer (GOHOP), 541 Eatery & Exchange and Micah House Refugee Reception Services. She is mid-way through a Masters of Divinity at Wycliffe College and is in a year of preparation to take vows with the Order of the Mustard Seed (OMS). Nina loves to practice visual art, bake bread, read books, and spend time with her husband, Dave. She is passionate about walking alongside young people in their journey of loving Jesus and becoming more like Him.

Isaac Butler, Resident Leader

Isaac joins the Act Five team following a season of living in London, Ontario, where he earned a degree in Kinesiology from Western University, worked as a personal trainer, and practiced living intentionally in his local community. He is excited about relocating to Hamilton to live with Act Five students and invest in their lives. Currently, Isaac is participating in Arrow Leadership’s Emerging Leader program. He loves outdoor adventures, learning new skills, reading good books, and physical training. Through lots of experience with summer camp and wilderness trips, he has become deeply committed to leading others to reflect on where they’ve been, where they are, and where they’re going.

Abby Lobert, Resident Leader

Abby is happy to be joining Act Five in the upcoming year as a Resident Leader! She recently graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Development Studies and is currently spending her time working at a garden centre and helping in her family’s greenhouses. In the past, she has worked with several youth programs and camps and loves building relationships with those around her. She has come to recognize more deeply the necessity of community and is excited to grow together with those involved in Act Five this coming year! She’s looking forward to going on hikes, drinking coffee, having life chats and dancing in the kitchens of the Blake house in the upcoming year!

David Schuurman & Alyssa Zilney, Resident Leaders

David and Alyssa can’t wait to get married later this summer before starting as Resident Leaders together with Act Five! They are both 2019 Redeemer Alumni with degrees in International Development and minors in Environmental Studies. They both can often be found walking and biking around Hamilton, eating shawarma, and hanging out with friends.
Alyssa is excited to be joining Act Five as a resident leader for a second year. She is excited about community discipleship, and walking alongside others as they discover themselves and their gifts. Alyssa can often be found on walks around the neighhbourhood, showing people her Rubik’s cube skills, and gardening in the Blake St backyard.
David loves living in, exploring, praying, and biking in Hamilton. He comes to Act Five after a year and half of being on staff with CityKidz. He is passionate about living in community, learning from those in poverty, and walking alongside young people as they discover their callings.

Pastor Willemina Zwart, Faculty for The Six Acts

Pastor Willemina is an ordained pastor in the Christian Reformed Church and has been called by Immanuel CRC, Simcoe as the missional pastor of a new summer ministry initiative for young adults called the South Coast Beach Project (SCBP). Her ministry experience includes six years campus ministry with the Coalition for Christian Outreach and almost 17 years CRC congregational ministry—most recently at Good News CRC in London, Ontario. She moved to Port Dover along with her recently retired husband, Kelly. Her passion is to walk alongside young adults as they discover more deeply the person of Jesus Christ and the adventure of living out a kingdom-shaped life. She is thrilled to be joining the teaching team of Act Five for this upcoming year!

Sarah Bittel, Act Five Admissions Counsellor

Sarah started as the Act Five Admissions Counsellor at the beginning of August and has loved getting to learn more about the program. She graduated from Redeemer University in 2019 and started as an Admissions Counsellor for Redeemer’s undergraduate program shortly after. She has loved getting to know the current Act Five students this year and is always available to chat with anyone interested in Act Five. She is passionate about building relationships and being able to support students. Sarah moved to Hamilton shortly after her time at Redeemer and has loved getting to explore the city more and forming community. She loves reading books, babysitting, and laughing with friends. If you have any questions about Act Five or admissions requirements you can email Sarah at