How it runs each day
The week is normally non residential and so after we have met in the morning and had breakfast together, participants then have a time of worship, reflection and teaching – devoting each day to God. (the first morning of the week also involves training). They then set off in teams into the community to work on projects for 6 hours. These local community projects have included painting Plunket health clinics, working in homes for the elderly, tree planting with the local council, working on a holiday week for disabled kids, running a street party for kids, working with the Salvation Army, creating and presenting the gospel through talks and drama in churches and on the streets, scrubbing graffiti and clearing weeds. They then return for an evening to chill out, worship, discuss and download the day, eat dinner together, and enjoy a range of fun activities including our very own YOUTHSERVE IDOL and YOUTHSERVE’S GOT TALENT! They then head off back home (or to bed if residential) and return the next day to do it all again…
Over the last couple of years we have developed our YOUTHSERVE weeks and work with one or two churches in their local communities, not just doing scatter gun projects, but working with a real mission focus on projects and activities that the church can then continue and follow up once the week as ended. Living counter culturally and experiencing sacrifice and perseverance. We are including not just blitzing a street clearing rubbish, gardening, painting out graffiti etc. We are also running a small kids event on the street at the same time and sharing faith. We even have Bibles to give away donated by the Bible Society. We have at the end of the weeks an open church afternoon, inviting those we’ve connected into during the week to spend the afternoon down our place and this gives them the opportunity to cross over into the church, many for the first time and be welcomed and find out what goes on and what they can connect in with. We have then seen over the weeks that followed, families attending churches and links to our schools work from kids on the street we connected with. It’s been great to draw together our schools work, camping ministry and working with churches all into one.
“I thought I was there to serve and give out, but in the end I received just as much back in return and learned so much…” Y365 Student