On August 18, 2020, Jared Lindsey from the Young Life Organization spoke (via Zoom) to the membership of the Magnolia Rotary Club about his organization and what they do in our community. Pictured above is Jared Lindsey.

Jared first showed everyone a film that showed a little bit about what the life of a Young Life (YL) Leader looks like. It includes very early morning efforts to prepare for the day and to get donuts for his or her group of kids, Psychology classes, spending time with his or her group of kids, and having one on one chats with kids who what to. Their basic philosophy for a YL Leader is "They care one day at a time".
Jared explained that he has been involved with YL for almost 5 years and has been living in the Magnolia area for a little over a year. The YL organization in our area covers both Tomball and Magnolia but currently in the Magnolia area only has a YL club at MWHS. Jared is willing to talk to anyone who wants to get one started at MHS and he hopes to have a club there within the next year. Jared stated that only about 40% of all teenagers have any connection at all to a church family so that leaves 60% of them who are looking for answers and just want to talk to someone they can trust to accept them as they are. YL helps to fill that need.
Jared explained that once a week YL Leaders hold an event they call "Club" which is a structured party held in a very unstructured way to use music, games, and humor to break down social walls to allow for serious discussions about life that can also lead to group Bible studies where any and all questions that many kids have can be aired and discussed. Being involved with YL also allows kids to break from technology and other real world distractions and learn about themselves and others. YL Leaders are usually college level students and older adults who want to work with kids and have been involved with YL for several years. These YL Leaders are a key component in reaching the kids who really need help in their lives. As a result of YL efforts, 4 out of 5 YL participants consider Young Life and it's leaders to be a significant influence on their faith. Also, about 94% of volunteer YL staff would overwhelmingly recommend their leadership experience to a friend.
Jared explained that last summer (2019) he took almost 100 students to camp (mostly in Colorado but other states also). The kids usually have to earn the money to pay for the trip to the camp but the camp itself is paid for by business sponsors and other individuals. YL usually holds a fund raiser in October (Golf Scramble) and a fund raising banquet in November. However, because of COVID-19 this year it not definite whether or not these events will be possible. As a result, Jared's organization is researching other ideas as a backup to these events.
When asked what type of students YL is looking to get involved with, Jared explained that everyone is welcome but they do look for kids who are spiritually disinterested and hope to change that in order to improve their lives. Most YL Leaders start with a core of 2-3 kids and grow their group to reach more kids.
Real Provencher told everyone that he has been giving to YL for over 20 years because he has seen the good work they do with teenagers and recommended anyone interested to do they same.
For more information about YL, go to https://tomballmagnolia.younglife.org/.