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Children and young people's work news

Children and young people's work update April 2015



Children and Young People’s Work staff in Friends House: In September this year Chris Nickolay is retiring, having been in the post of Children’s Work Officer for almost 20 years. Chris has contributed lots to this work, not least the creation and development of the Journeys in the Spirit resources. In August this year Ruth Charles is leaving to join the year-long Clipper round the world yacht race, having been in the post of Children and Young People’s Work Officer for the past 4 years. Ruth has been responsible for some of the new events in recent years (Tall Ships, Live Adventurously and Living as a Quaker) as well as having oversight of the practicalities around holding CYP programmes at BYM each year. Both Chris and Ruth will be missed. Recruitment is underway for two new staff and the job details (including application forms) for both can be found at Please share these with any that you think might be interested in these posts. The closing date for applications is May 14.    

BYM 2015 Programmes: There are 130 0 – 18 year olds booked across the various age appropriate programmes that run as part of BYM taking place the first weekend of May. This includes 14 under-fives in two age groups and 33 5 – 11’s also in two age groups. These groups will be considering the theme Is it fair? in imaginative ways to link with the topics being considered in the main BYM sessions. Co-operative games, storytelling and quiet worship will form part of these programmes which enable all ages to be part of BYM over the weekend.

Things to do

Storytelling as theological reflection workshop: At Lancaster Meeting on Saturday 30 May (closing date for bookings is 15.5.15). This workshop considers an approach to storytelling known as ‘Godly Play’, which puts children’s responses at the heart of the experience. The workshop offers the opportunity to experience and try out Godly Play stories. This workshop is open to all. Advance booking is necessary. For information and booking details telephone 020 7663 1013, alternatively go to, or email

Building relationships in Children’s meeting – nurture and discipline workshop: At Friends House (organised by London Quakers) on Saturday 13 June (closing date for bookings is 29.5.15) and at Central Meeting Bristol on Saturday 18 July (closing date for bookings is 30.6.15). These workshops are for people in meetings working with children who wish to develop their skills and approaches or people who are considering working with children in meetings. These workshops are open to all. Advance booking is necessary. For information and booking details go to, email or telephone 020 7663 1013.  

Things to use

Mindful movements: A book by Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist who seeks to generate peace and reconciliation. This little book is a simply and beautifully illustrated guide to a set of movements based in yoga and tai chi that can help people of any age enhance their experience of stillness and calm. The book includes a DVD of people demonstrating the movements. The exercises could be the basis for part of a children’s meeting (have a practice yourself first). Available from the Quaker Bookshop 020 7663 1030

Things to tell children 

National Children’s Day 2015:  This is an initiative of the Save Childhood Movement and takes place on Sunday 17 May with the theme of The science and magic of play. For information go to where you can request a free play pack.

Leaveners – DramaQuest: For children aged 7 to 11 in Birmingham this summer, a two day fun drama project about children who have been real heroes in history! Leaveners are very happy to have support from a real-life child hero Zach, who started a campaign against slavery when he was only 12. Zach says: ‘Everyone can bring hope and cause people to think by drawing, painting and writing about the world as we see it. So harness that creativity, pick up a camera, pencils, paint or make drama together at the Leaveners'. Children and parents can sign up to the DramaQuest mailing list on to receive more information and dates soon!

 Things useful to know

Family Ministry Conference: Exploring some research undertaken by the Methodist Church about families and faith communities, taking place 11 – 12 September at Hope University in Liverpool. For further details email  

A retreat for young Friends: This retreat from Thursday 14 - Sunday 17 May takes place at Swarthmoor Hall for those aged 18 – 30. It offers space for spiritual connection, exploration and deepening. With opportunities to explore spiritual practice, including through creativity, contemplation, music, movement and words, it will nourish and encourage us on our journeys. For further details contact Jane Pearson at

Journeys in the Spirit resouce:

The Journeys in the Spirit: children’s work edition was launched in 2007; you can find out more about this by viewing the Journeys in the Spirit: children’s edition web pages that are within Resources on this site. This includes details of how to subscribe to receive this each month.

If you work with young people within a Quaker setting then the Journeys in the Spirit: youth work edition is for you. Full information about this, including subscription details, can be found on the Journeys in the Spirit: youth work edition web pages that are also within Resources on this site.