Strategy Series: Part One - Partner
Over the next few months, we want to share a more in-depth look at our strategy: Partner, Equip, Multiply. Each month, we will be sharing with you about each of the three ways that we help youth workers around the world to amplify their efforts in reaching young people in their communities. For the first month, we will begin with the first part of our strategy: Partner.
YouthHOPE partners with local Christian leaders in every region we serve, whether they are leaders with another missions organization or regional leaders of a specific denomination. This allows us to work with leaders who think and do youth ministry very differently than us or from others who do youth ministry in the United States. Because of this, we learn just as much from them as they do from us about the different methods that exist in youth ministry today.
When deciding who to partner with, we make it our goal to find, build relationships with, and equip global Christian leaders who have a passion for youth ministry, but who may not have easy access to youth ministry training in their area. One of the most startling statistics about global youth ministry is that 90% of the world’s youth ministry resources are in the USA, where only 4% of the world’s youth live. Since half of the world’s population is under the age of 25, it is imperative that we reach these young people with the life-giving hope of Jesus.
However, we at YouthHOPE know that we are not the best people to reach these global youth. We did not grow up in these communities, and so we do not know what methods for youth ministry would be best in the variety of cultures that exist in the world. Therefore, we want to empower youth ministry leaders in these communities to be able to reach their youth. We believe that these youth ministry leaders can transform communities, churches, and lives long after YouthHOPE is there.
Our partnership at YouthHOPE exists on a variety of levels:
We value relationships and so we stay in contact and share information and best practices as well as listen to those living and working in these contexts for the best methods and communication styles
We work with youth as well as with adults who are youth leaders in order to ensure the most effective ministry possible
Many of our conferences bring people together from across a region. By doing this, we are able to facilitate networking and partnership across existing ministries
Partnership is important to us because it is important to God. When God through Christ “reconciled all things to himself” (Colossians 1:20), He could have carried out His plan entirely on His own. But instead, God chose to allow us to partner with Him in spreading the good news about His kingdom. Therefore, because God chose to partner with us, we at YouthHOPE believe that part of our strategy should be to partner with youth workers that God has called in order to bring the hope of Jesus to the lives of global youth. The words that Paul wrote in Philippians 1:3-6 reflect our heart for the global youth leaders we work with:
I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
 Terry Linhart and David Livermore, Global Youth Ministry: Reaching Adolescents Around the World (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011), 29.