From a parent on communication…

Dear youth workers. You know I adore you. You know I believe in you. You know I want good things for you. And then I get to have conversations like this. Take heed and listen to this mom’s words. She may not be in your group but someone just like her is.

I had a long talk with a mom and volunteer leader this morning about communication with youth leaders and the ministry and hear is the summary of what she had to say:

1) Keep your communication up to date. Don’t expect me to troll your facebook page looking for the next event. Make it clear with detailed info. of where, what time and who exactly is involved and I need e-mail, a calendar for my fridge or bulletin board and maybe even a text reminder but facebook is for my kids…and I never assume they are going to tell me anything. I’ve got more than one kid and I never know if it’s for junior high, HS or both.

2) If you have updates from activities from two years ago online, I assume you haven’t done anything in two years. It’s not cool to show history and how long you’ve been doing something to anyone but the youth who were there two years ago. I couldn’t care less. Show me a picture of someone currently in the youth group.

3) Many people are transient these days. Military, jobs or family keeps us on the move. Your church web page is my first impression. When you can’t be bothered to keep it up to date, I assume you can’t be bothered to take good care of my kids.

4) I am more interested in up to date, accurate information than your bells and whistles. I appreciate good graphics and pictures but if you make me “enter” your site or download a player every time just to get to basic information my limited time gets eaten up and I lose interest.

5) I’m a denominational kind of gal. When I transfer to a new town, I go to the denominational website first. I look for a church and denominational events. When it is out of date, I assume that no one cares about what is happening locally. I will still find a church and I will volunteer but heck if I am going to advocate for denominational anything if that is out of date.

What do you do well when it comes to communication and where do you need help? What resources do you have? I’d love to share with others!


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About Amy Jacober

Amy Jacober (PhD, Fuller Seminary) is a youth ministry veteran with ministry and teaching experience. She focuses on practical theology, urban ministry, theology & disability, and marginalized communities. She is a volunteer youth worker in her church and community, lead consultant with Youth Ministry Architects and serves on the Young Life Capernaum national board. In her free time she can be found playing with her three young children, husband, and oversized dog.