Before planning a youth retreat, it’s worth asking yourself “What do we want to achieve with this retreat?” You may only have one youth retreat objective, or you may have several:
- There’s a theme you want to cover over a weekend
- You’ve noticed that your youth develop a deeper faith while at youth retreats (if the retreat is run by a church)
- There are a number of new youth in your group and you want them to have an opportunity to bond
- You and other helpers want a chance to build a deeper relationship with the young people – something that happens more easily at a youth retreat
- Your church or organization runs a youth retreat every year, so the students would be disappointed if there wasn’t one
- You want to organize something fun that the youth can invite their friends to
- You want to celebrate your students graduating
- Your young people are from low-income families and so wouldn’t normally have a chance to get away
- Your group is getting a new leader or youth pastor and a youth retreat would provide a good time for them to be introduced
- You want to book a guest speaker to come and speak to your young people and a weekend retreat would be the ideal time
If you have a clear objective of what you want to achieve, you’ll be a lot more focused on what you need to do to make the youth retreat a success. It’ll give you a clearer idea of what kind of retreat center to book, how much it’ll cost, what activities you can do and how you should promote it.
Having a vision of what you want to achieve will also inspire other adults to help you lead the youth retreat and will increase interest among the students. Parents will also be more supportive, as you’ll be able to tell them how their children will benefit from the time away.
**We’ve now published a book to help anyone planning a youth retreat. Find out more about How To Plan A Youth Retreat here**
Question: What are some reasons you run youth retreats? Let us know in the comments below.
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