Ventures Update Spring 2013
Invitation of a lifetime www.ventures.org.uk
Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well. 1 Thessalonians 2:8
Many of you will have personally experienced the joy of seeing the gospel of Jesus Christ being proclaimed through a whole week away on a Venture. Seeing children and young people come to understand God’s wonderful love for them in the context of Christian community is not only inspirational, it’s biblical, as the above verse from 1 Thessalonians shows us. Sharing ‘our lives as well’ begins long before the holiday season, as we get the good news of Ventures out to the children, young people, parents and youth leaders we know through church, family and social networks. By promoting, inviting and encouraging young people to come on a Venture, you are enabling them to discover more about the life-changing good news of Jesus Christ for themselves. You are also giving them the opportunity to share their lives with Christians their own age, and get to know some fantastic role models in our wonderful volunteer leaders.
All you might need to do is to recommend a specific Venture they could attend. With your personal recommendation, someone might just have the courage to book themselves or their child on a Venture. To help you spread the word we offer free promotional materials (see page 5). The Ventures DVD and brochure in particular are great tools for introducing someone to Ventures for the first time. Ask God if there’s someone you should encourage to attend a Venture this summer. They might be eternally grateful. Also, thanks to our generous supporters, bursaries are available for families who are unable to afford the full cost of a Venture. Please see the Parents’ Stuff section of the Ventures website for more about this.
David Hart Director, Ventures and Falcon Camps
Venture leader and vicar Steven Hanna headed up the team which launched the new Beechwood Venture in 2012. He shares with us the story of Beechwood so far:
We grew … ‘As overall leader of Woolhampton 2 in 2011, I was aware that the demand for spaces on our Venture was greater than we could meet. Many of our 11-14s wanted to invite their friends but were unable to, so we knew it was time to think about planting a new holiday. We praise God for the success of the Woolhampton Ventures – too many members is a fantastic problem to have! We were conscious of the need to keep costs down to make the new Venture affordable to as many young people as possible. We didn’t want anyone to miss out, and suggested a model of the young person, the church and a subsidy fund each paying a third of the cost.
We planted …
We prayed … ‘Although we had plenty of members thanks to strong links with various local churches, we didn’t have enough leaders, and needed to find a site to host the new holiday. People thought we were daft for planting a new Venture during the Olympics, but we felt it was what God wanted. We took our need for leaders to God in prayer, and began working with St Elisabeth’s (where I am vicar) to recruit leaders. We also spread the word around other churches that we were planting a new Venture. We were able to secure the Cumnor House School site in West Sussex, which was already used for the Danehill Ventures.
‘It was great to see more new people getting involved and joining some of the existing Woolhampton 2 leaders to form the Beechwood team. We had a fantastic week, with 40 young people and around 20 leaders. Despite the holiday being a day shorter than Woolhampton 2, there was still time to build quality relationships, and give members a step up in their faith. The wide-games and anything that involved water were particularly popular, as well as our trip out to Chessington World of Adventures. Seeing leaders come back exhausted but enthused was massively encouraging. Bring on summer 2013!’
That’s what friends are for When young people invite their friends on Ventures, amazing things happen! Marina, Becky and Andrew, who came on Brambletye 3 last summer, can all testify to the significance of a personal invitation.
Making new friends This was my first Venture. I heard about Brambletye through friends and church. I made loads of new friends, and really enjoyed the amazing worship and Bible study, the soldier obstacle course and the water slide! I learnt that God doesn’t judge us, and that even through bad times, he never leaves our side. I would definitely recommend Ventures to a friend, you learn so much and there are numerous fun activities arranged by the lovely, caring leaders. Marina, 15
Sense of family I first heard about Ventures in 2009 through a leader at my CYFA youth group. This summer I brought a friend, because I think as many people as possible should have the same experiences I have had. The sense of family and the teaching theme were so good this year, and I loved the Horrible Histories activity day! I met Jesus on my first Venture, and I would love for as many young people as possible to do the same. My friend who came with me had an amazing time, and took lots of photos. She is talking about returning next year. Becky, 18
God’s boundless love My favourite thing about Brambletye was the atmosphere – it’s not often you can be with such a large group of teenage Christians and really discuss God and the Bible in a way specific to us. I learnt that no matter how insignificant you feel, God still loves you. His love is boundless, and is the same for everyone, no matter who they are. I loved the worship and the different speakers each night who helped me explore God’s word and understand what it means to me. I invited friends this year and we have so many good memories. Going on a Venture is life-changing and brings you so much closer to God. Andrew, 16
Top 10 ways to spread the word
The simplest and best. If you know someone who would enjoy coming on a Venture, either as a leader or member, invite them personally.
Sharing on Facebook
Like CPAS Ventures (and your own Venture if it has a page) on Facebook and tell your Facebook friends all about Ventures too!
If you‘re on Twitter, follow, mention and retweet @CPASVentures to share what’s going on with your followers.
As well as the ‘My Venture’ videos (see overleaf), the members’ and parents’ versions of the Ventures promotional videos are up on YouTube.
DVD version of the members’ and parents’ versions of the promotional video. Order as many as you like for free on the Ventures website.
Churches and youth groups are great places to let people know about Ventures. Show the DVD, share stories and pray for the ministry of Ventures together.
The 2013 brochure is out. If you haven’t already received one through the post, request a copy online or by phoning the office on 0300 123 0780 (option 2).
Leaflets, posters, PowerPoints and additional copies of Ventures Update are available from www.cpas.org.uk/promote.
Send an invitation
Find out the who, what, where, when and how of all the 2013 Ventures by browsing all this year’s holidays at www.ventures.org.uk.
Turn to the back page for a personalised invitation to give to someone you know. Email or phone us if you’d like more copies.
Thank you for helping promote Ventures
Creating a Ventures culture Ever since leading on a Venture ten years ago, Matt Simper has been ‘bitten by the bug’ and made a week on a Venture a key part of the youth programme at his church.
‘When I started leading on a Venture I had just started in youth work and quickly saw the worth of Ventures and how it slotted in with our youth work, as well as being great fun,’ said Matt, who is the youth worker at St Peter’s Harold Wood in Essex.
‘To get started, just try to get one or two kids on a Venture, and make sure one or two leaders go with them. Right from the start, create a culture of sending young people and adults from your church on Ventures, then use that to build momentum.
Matt has led on the Sedbergh Venture with his wife for several years, with up to a dozen teenagers from the church joining them.
‘Get the kids sharing their testimonies with a short interview at the front of church, and get them sharing what they’ve enjoyed at youth group too. If the kids come back buzzing from their Venture you’re onto a winner.
‘We have nurtured a culture of going on a Venture in the youth work at St Peter’s, which includes taking a younger group of 11-14s on Ventures as well. Going on Ventures is now in the lifeblood of the church. We’ve also got support from the vicar who is a great believer in Ventures because he knows the impact.’ Matt appreciates that Ventures is not in the fabric of the youth work at every church, so he has a few pointers for those who are new to Ventures.
‘Parents can have issues too, such as letting go of a bit of their family holiday. To help overcome any cost barriers we have tried different things to keep travel costs down, as well as applying for bursaries where appropriate. ‘The combination of youth leaders addressing those issues with parents and their children hearing about how great Ventures are from their peers makes a huge difference.’
Ventures video diaries Last summer we let three young people loose with video cameras to record video diaries of their Ventures experiences. Hannah, Ben and Marion are now the stars of three short YouTube videos chronicling their holidays. At the start of his week, Ben said: ‘I’m looking forward to spending lots of time with my friends, making new friends and learning LOADS about Jesus.’ The video diaries show their personal perspectives on all that Ventures has to offer, including games, mealtimes, meetings and discussions. See Marion scale the high ropes, watch Hannah zoom down the zip wire and follow Ben’s quest to search for Santa in the summer sunshine. Take a look at what they all got up to and share the videos with anybody who might be interested, to give them a young person’s perspective on a life-changing week with Ventures. Watch out for more ‘My Venture’ videos coming soon. Like CPAS Ventures on Facebook to be informed when new videos are available online.
View online at www.youtube.com/VentureHolidays
Dear I think you would LOVE to come on a Venture because:
On a Venture you will: Have amazing fun! Make new friends Get the chance to try out new things Hear about Jesus Take part in exciting activities Get to know fantastic leaders Be inspired by the worship times Learn more about God‘s love From
You can find out more about Ventures, when they happen and how to book at
Make someone’s summer – fill in and tear off our personalised Ventures invitation!
Ventures is part of the ministry of CPAS CPAS, Sovereign Court One (Unit 3), Sir William Lyons Road, University of Warwick Science Park, COVENTRY CV4 7EZ Church Pastoral Aid Society Registered charity no 1007820 A company limited by guarantee Registered in England no 2673220 Registered office at above address