Trends and directions in Youth work

pulse.jpg I am trying to look at trends in youth work, wanting to take a bit of a pulse to identify where the heartbeat is at the moment and where it’s flowing. I have asked the collective wisdom of the federation of Diocesan Youth Work bods and I’m now asking the question here too?
What do you think?
Trends, changes, becoming history, the future?

The Sword and the Meccano

sword.jpg I hope you’ll forgive the glimpse into the inner workings of “The tribe called Macdonald” but I wanted to mention that its the birthday of my youngest, he’s 7 today! My daughter and I made him a sword (which I’m rather chuffed with). His other present was some Meccano, he opened the wrapping and in a VERY VERY happy and excited voice said,
“Wow, I’ve waited my whole life for this!”
I just thought you should know that hyperbole is alive and well in our household.
Happy Birthday son

Woolhope Cockshoot updated Information

web woolhope.jpg We’ve just had our annual meeting of the trustees of The Woolhope Cockshoot Christian residential centre, the funkiest SMALL residential centre within the Western Spiral. I’ve taken the chance to update the flyer, if you want one then you can download it new woolhope leaflet 2009b for e-mailing.pdf or e-mail for a snail mailed hardcopy. If you are thinking of taking your youth group on a weekend away It’s also possible to arrange a visit and tour 🙂
For those who know the centre, plans now include finding some money to re-do the bathrooms, make the Bakehouse safe and at some point replace the boiler. All a challenge when the centre only generates £10k a year BUT that’s never been a barrier with developments so far.
Woolhope View web ban.jpg

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On the blog front

Blog Update: Spam continues to be a problem (Grrrr) and I’ve had to switch off ‘comments’ from some older entries, this goes against the grain a bit but it is effective. The anti-Spam-bot on Moveable type needs to gain a few extra I.Q points as it lets quite a bit of stuff slip through, you’d think “Nice Site” would be a dead giveaway but the software doesn’t.
Encouragingly though, Youthblog had visits from 52 different countries in the last 10 days, weird but Cool! I added a widget thingy on the sidebar that records where people virtually arrive from. Admittedly some will have only come to half-inch pictures BUT it’s funky anyway! I’m hoping that Luxembourg and Ecuador will put in an appearance today :-).
Have you noticed that Technorati has changed? They no longer put “number of links” by the data on how many sites link to you, instead they put, “Authority”. This made me laugh as it seems a bit like, TOP TRUMPS. So if you are playing a game, Youthblog: Authority 82 This sounds quite good until you look at the other Top Trump data and find there are over 56,676 blogs that are more interesting than this one, LOL!
I dropped my PDA this weekend 🙁 and the Screen has gone Pete-Tong, this is BAD news from an organisational point of view! I thought you should know as you can then watch my general descent into chaos as I try to keep an Outlook diary and a paper diary sync’d 🙂 I did like this possible recycling idea though that would at least maintain its calculator function:

Residential Questions

If you are a leader within a Youth group and if you take groups on residentials then PLEASE can you answer these questions via comment or e-mail …..
1. All things considered do you prefer to take your group to a centre that caters and provides activities or a venue where it’s down to you and your group? (and Why?)
2. Has your use of centres in the last few years seen a shift in focus?
3. How many young people do you take away at a time?
4. What are the age ranges on residentials that you run?
5. How far do you travel to residential centres that you use?

This follows on from some earlier questions that I asked and is VERY VERY useful. Many thanks for your help and I will be sending a copy of “Happy in My Skin” to a random respondent, lacking, as I do, access to Blue Peter Badges.
Shalom 🙂

I am because we are

tengrp.jpgIn African understanding, the person is first identified in relationships. To be a person, male or female, is to have the gift of life and to belong in relationships. The primary relationship is an interpersonal kinship bond in which one could say:
“I am because we are, and since we are, therefore I am.”
Professor John Mbiti, Kenya.
ht to Michael

But has it got ‘Mission’ in the title

Is it possible to get a Christian book published at the moment if it hasn’t got ‘Mission’ in the title?
oh and the rumour that the Macdonald/Hassall book on Tweenagers has been reneamed “Mission Shaped Mission to Tweenagers, a Missiological Exploration” is mostly untrue!

Band Names Challenge

dh.jpgOver on Mustard Seed Shavings, Steve Tilley has been posting an ongoing cryptic quiz where each clue is a different band or artist name. This has been occupying quite a bit of my driving time as I try to crack them. You have to have a look BUT I warn you they are pretty brutal, this is my favourite:
“There is no light on in the house. Nevertheless the strange half human male/half bird of prey creature who lives there can be heard using the vacuum cleaner”
I reckon you could have some fun with these on minibus trips with the youth group, especially getting the group to devise their own!
Oh and if you want the answer to the above click on continue reading
but be prepared to cringe 🙂

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