A tragic number of young people feel crushed by powerful social and economic forces, leaving them hopeless and in despair. What, they ask, is the basis for hope? And who will help?
There are over 7 million youth and young adults across Canada – 15 to 29 year olds
often referred to as Gen Z and Millennials. They are extremely diverse – socially, ethnically, economically, and culturally.
What they have in common is a set of experiences, perspectives, and questions that render our traditional ways of engaging people with Scripture largely ineffective. Even those with a background in Christian faith do not naturally align with CBS.
There are notable and inspiring exceptions. But the challenge is inescapable – we must have new products, new ways to engage and new relationships if we are to have an impact among the next generations of Canadians.
In 2020 we took a fundamental first step: we created a strategy for extensive consultation with NextGen youth and leaders, rather than guessing what will be credible and beneficial.
We also laid the foundation for an immediate emergency intervention to provide the resources we already have to ministries and agencies engaged with youth at risk. Early contacts showed numerous youth agencies eager for spiritual resources and help to engage young people.
As we entered 2021, we were energetically mapping which youth ministries and agencies across the country would be aligned, interested and capable as partners with CBS. The focus of the coming year will be exploring how we can best support them now and build a strong and effective program for the future.