Thriving youth outreach in Gorleston area
Christian youth outreach in the Yarmouth and Gorleston area is thriving, as this summary from Identity Youth Worker Matt Ashpole demonstrates.
Identity have been running a Christian based lunch club at East Norfolk Sixth Form College to provide mentoring for some their students who need extra support. Matt says This has been running very well with three students being mentored. One of the young people's teachers even said that they could see a big difference in one of the students attitudes to college/life in general as a result of the work with them. The attendance of one or two staff members consistently coming along has been encouraging as they are able to contribute to the discussions and also direct the content too.
Youth Alpha finished in the Spring, which engaged with 20 young people and over the course of 9 sessions, with half attending 7 or more of the sessions. The majority of the group felt that they had grown in knowledge and faith as a result of their experience at youth alpha. Another course will run before too long.
22 young people have been engaging with Central, the twice monthly group designed to create inter-church fellowship amongst young people. The group currently draws young people from: St. Mary Magdalene Church and Cliff Park Community Church in Gorleston, St. Nicholas Church and Kingsgate Community Church in Great Yarmouth, St. Margaret's in Ormesby and St. Mary's in Martham.
St Mary Magdalene’s fortnightly outreach club, Mags, continues to thrive on a Friday night, with Identity's support. Numbers are limited to 25 to encourage more meaningful conversations and develop a more relational space for the young people to be a part of and connect with. Matt Ashpole says “So far, this is proving to work well and the conversations are much better as is the general behaviour of those within the group. Those coming enjoy relaxing with sports, games, art and the beloved tuck shop!” The church's Sunday Youth Group 'Hot Choc Elders' is also developing well and growing in number.
The Bible Study programme called 'Zip', based at St.Andrew's Church in Gorleston has now resumed following Youth Alpha. The young people enjoy playing games and studying God's word together and the leaders are praying for an increase in numbers.
The social action project LYN (Love Your Neighbourhood) will be running throughout the summer holidays. This is a programme where young people are able to physically impact their community by helping local residents with manual jobs.
Identity has been developing resources for Cliff Park Community Church's Sunday Youth Group Q3. This proved to be a valued help whilst the church was in the process of growing their youth team and they are now able to plan/create their own plans for their young people.
Matt says “We would love these above stories to be true of each church within the area. As such, we remain ready to support other local churches with a desire to develop their youth ministry or perhaps re-start their youth ministries which went on hold during covid. Please do get in touch if we can be of any help and support! Please know we are here and available.”
For more information about Identity, e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org or Anna Price at : email@example.com
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Identity is based at St. Mary Magdalene Church, Magdalen Square, Gorleston, Gt. Yarmouth, Norfolk, NR31 7BZ.
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Tony Rothe, 29/07/2022