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Unity of Boulder Spiritual Community

Why Youth Groups Are Important

Why Youth Groups Are Important 
 Youth groups provide a safe, accessible place for young people to meet and socialize in an informal setting with supervision by caring, responsible adults. They provide opportunities for youth to develop skills and confidence, a sense of self-worth, and a sense of community. They provide a safe space in which tweens/teens can explore their beliefs and values and develop their identity (which is their developmental task at this stage in their lives).  Youth groups provide a place of support and safety so kids have a sense of belonging even if they feel different or isolated, don’t fit in elsewhere, are shy, self-conscious, and have low self-esteem. 
Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development indicate that the tween/teen years are a primary stage of identity development (or of role confusion).Tweens in middle school are particularly influenced by their peers according to research.  Tweens/teens look to others to act as mirrors of who they are and use peers and adults (usually not parents at this stage) to help them see and define themselves.  Long term research also shows that: for kids who come from a dysfunctional and/or traumatic background, one adult who sees them and believes in them can make the difference in them becoming productive, healthy adults. Tweens and teens are drawn to groups to feel included; the nature of these groups can be a positive or negative influence in their lives. 
Groups help youth develop a sense of identity, explore and develop values and purpose, learn communication skills, connect with others, have fun, and in  church youth groups such as ours, develop a strong spiritual foundation. 
Elements of a successful program include regular weekly meetings, strong and compassionate adult leaders, and fun, creative activities for the youth. 
Draw for kids: fun, humor, creativity. Refreshments/food. Fun skill building and community building activities. Involvement of all kids, not just the popular ones. Celebrations, holiday parties, retreats. A chance to gather weekly and meet new friends.
Draw for parents: Going to church together on Sunday as a family activity, while the kids have their own programs to be part of. Knowing their kids will be responsibly supervised and involved in healthy, spiritually based activities.
Submitted by Deborah King  M.A., Ed.S. , LPC
Deb King has been a life sustaining Unity of Boulder member for over 30 years, and a parent of 2 who attended Boulder Unity Sunday School,  Uniteens and YOU groups (which were a wonderful and positive experience for them).


 Youth groups provide a safe, accessible place for young people to meet and socialize in an informal setting with supervision by caring, responsible adults. They provide opportunities for youth to develop skills and confidence, a sense of self-worth, and a sense of community. They provide a safe space in which tweens/teens can explore their beliefs and values and develop their identity (which is their developmental task at this stage in their lives).  Youth groups provide a place of support and safety so kids have a sense of belonging even if they feel different or isolated, don’t fit in elsewhere, are shy, self-conscious, and have low self-esteem. 
Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development indicate that the tween/teen years are a primary stage of identity development (or of role confusion).Tweens in middle school are particularly influenced by their peers according to research.  Tweens/teens look to others to act as mirrors of who they are and use peers and adults (usually not parents at this stage) to help them see and define themselves.  Long term research also shows that: for kids who come from a dysfunctional and/or traumatic background, one adult who sees them and believes in them can make the difference in them becoming productive, healthy adults. Tweens and teens are drawn to groups to feel included; the nature of these groups can be a positive or negative influence in their lives. 
Groups help youth develop a sense of identity, explore and develop values and purpose, learn communication skills, connect with others, have fun, and in  church youth groups such as ours, develop a strong spiritual foundation. 
Elements of a successful program include regular weekly meetings, strong and compassionate adult leaders, and fun, creative activities for the youth. 
Draw for kids: fun, humor, creativity. Refreshments/food. Fun skill building and community building activities. Involvement of all kids, not just the popular ones. Celebrations, holiday parties, retreats. A chance to gather weekly and meet new friends.
Draw for parents: Going to church together on Sunday as a family activity, while the kids have their own programs to be part of. Knowing their kids will be responsibly supervised and involved in healthy, spiritually based activities.
Submitted by Deborah King  M.A., Ed.S. , LPC
Deb King has been a life sustaining Unity of Boulder member for over 30 years, and a parent of 2 who attended Boulder Unity Sunday School,  Uniteens and YOU groups (which were a wonderful and positive experience for them).