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Collaboration enables new youth group in Evesham

Published: 30th April 2024

Younite youth group logo‘YouNite’ is a new youth group for 10 to 18-year-olds in Evesham which has been set up as an ecumenical collaboration between different churches in the town. It is currently attracting around 25 young people each Friday evening who meet at the Vale of Evesham Community Church.

Children chilling out on chairs at the Evesham youth groupAndy Smith, vicar of St Peter’s Church in Bengeworth, initially brought together the church leaders in Evesham to explore the idea of a youth group. He said: “It soon became clear that everyone had something to give, but it wasn’t something that any individual church could do on their own. Each of us had a few young people and a handful of volunteers, but we could see that we would need to work together to achieve a critical mass and create the ‘buzz’ which is so important for youth work.” 

The leadership of the group is currently provided by St Peter’s, the Vale of Evesham Community Church and Evesham Baptist Church, who also all contribute financially. The project is also supported by the other churches in the town with prayer. “Everyone has been very supportive and know that if they come into contact with young people, there is somewhere to point them towards.”

children playing pool at the Evesham youth groupThe group is overtly Christian. At the start the young people can chill out and play games, table tennis, pool or use the computer consoles. There is then around 20 -25 minutes of organised games before 20 minutes of faith input. This could be engagement with the bible, sharing of testimony or answering some of the young people’s questions around faith.

Andy continued: “We try to offer a safe space for young people. A place where they can ask questions, talk, and have an adult listen who is not a parent or teacher. However, it’s more than just turning up and playing games. We want to help navigate the complexities of being a teenager and show the young people that Jesus is there for them and can help them to live life well. We want this to be church for the young people who come along.”

Children sitting on the floor at the Evesham youth groupVolunteers come from each of the churches and take it in turns to lead each session. The group started last October and is already reaching young people who don’t yet know Jesus, with church members bringing their friends along. There is no charge, but those attending can buy sweets and drinks from a tuck shop.

“I really hope that the group will not only benefit the young people, but also enrich each of the churches that are involved. I have certainly found it to be very lifegiving to be working together. St Peter’s couldn’t have done this on its own, but together we have been able to look at where the need is and what the spirit is doing!”

Page last updated: Tuesday 30th April 2024 9:57 AM

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