Claire Morgans, CEO of Ykids, tells us about her seminar ‘Dancing on the roof - working with children in the 21st century.’
Claire Morgans, C E O of Ykids, will lead the seminar – ‘Dancing on the roof - working with children in the 21st century’ as part of Life Call on September 29th. Here she tells us what is in store.
What is your role?
I am the CEO of Ykids, a Christian charity working to benefit the lives of children and young people living in deprived communities. We work with over 2000 children a week and partner with many local churches, business, community groups and schools.
I lead a team of 20 staff and 70 volunteers as well as overseeing our two social enterprises. I am responsible for strategic development, fund raising, training, HR, finances, project development - a jack of all trades like any manager of a small charity !
Why did you agree to host a seminar at this year’s LifeCall?
I didn't used to like children - when I became a Christian, Jesus began to change me and called me into working with the hurt and vulnerable. I get excited about what he is doing in the lives of children and young people, his heart for them and what an incredibly high calling it is - not to mention the fun! I love to share and excite people about the incredible blessings and rewards of working with young people.
What will your seminar focus on?
The seminar will focus on God's heart for young people and the many different and diverse ways we can work with them. It is certainly not a one size fits all calling - the opportunities are endless, and give people the chance to think out of the box and engage their whole communities through its young people.
Children's work has long been neglected in this country (we'll look at a few statistics) and yet it is one of the fastest and easiest ways to grow a church! We want to share our passion for this great high calling and encourage others who may be thinking that they are being led in this direction.
Who is it aimed at?
Anyone - I believe children's work is a whole church issue - not just for the kid’s workers. We want people to come who want to be excited about the opportunities and rewards that good children’s and youth ministry can bring and to catch the vision.
Why should people come/what will they learn from your session?
We would hope that people would understand the high value that God places on children and young people even when the church doesn't always do so. We would hope that people would be encouraged and feel confident that it is not a second class calling but a tremendous privilege
How did you feel God calling you into what you do?
I began to do children's work at Bible college - because I had to. I didn't like children but I did enjoy drama, dressing up, messy games and craft. I then went to Spring Harvest as a helper on the 5-7's team (because the boy I liked had gone) and was given responsibility for 10 and 7 year olds.
At one session a little girl began telling me about her worries about her younger brother and her granddad dying of cancer. Suddenly I saw that she was just a small person that had all the worries of the world - just the same as an adult, but she didn't have the emotional equipment to be able to deal with it.
I saw many adults who were screwed up because of something that had happened to them as children and realised that if children had Jesus in their lives, to be with them, talk to, to know and be loved by him, then he would help them navigate the minefield of life and help them grow up whole and happy despite what they went through.
Suddenly I knew what God was calling me to - to bind up the broken hearted - starting with the children. Since then the calling has grown and developed but at its heart is always empowering children in a relationship with Jesus - oh and I later married the boy whom I followed to Spring Harvest!