Village Youth work

I was speaking at a meeting last night that was organised by the Churches of four villages in a rural area. Usually in these situations I am speaking into a setting that has nothing going on for young people. last night however was so encouraging! Firstly there was a huge age spread of people including teenagers. (it’s amazing how often that no-one thinks to invite young people). Secondly the meeting turned out to be very much about building on what was happening AND it was Church and community working together.
It’s worth mentioning the youth club based in one of the villages though which was started by a 12 year old and a 15 year old. They’d put together a survey which they’d taken to all the young people in the village. Having read these, they put together a presentation based on the responses and went to see the local Sports Club. They managed to persuade the Sports Club to allow them the use of their building free of charge (in return for promoting membership to the youth club).
The young people concerned found some adult volunteers to be at the club to meet legal requirements but the club is very much led by the 15 year old and a friend and is working remarkably well. Age range is huge (8-16) but works, attendence is about 30 when it runs once a month. I thought this was fabulous but the best bit was talking to the lad and hearing his thoughts on how it could develop, the challanges they faced and the opportunities that existed!