Development of BC Conference Children and Family Ministry Certificate Program

Across British Columbia, ministry with children and families is recognized to be a critical area for the health and development of vital United Church congregations. The challenge is creating a supply of trained people to lead this fundamental area.

In late 2013, Provoking Leadership consulted key practitioners within BC Conference who have demonstrated interest and experience in children and family ministry. With support from Eric Hamlyn and Ingrid Brown, two key recommendations emerged from these consultations:

  1. The desire for a website where resources could be developed and shared; and
  2. The development of flexible and quality training opportunities for those who minister with children and their families.

The first recommendation awaits a larger review of the Conference website, Provoking Leadership and Executive Secretary Rev. Doug Goodwin definied a short-term contract to develop a proposed framework for such training. The contract description can be reviewed here: Download contract description

On January 30, 2014, Doug, Eric and Ingrid contracted Gaye Sharpe to develop the framework proposal.

Gaye is well known within BC Conference and The United Church of Canada for her work with and advocacy for ministry with children and their families. In recent years, Gaye has provided education and mentoring to those interested in this work.

The proposal is expected to be modular in nature and flexible enough to respond to the needs of lay or paid leaders. Some leaders will be interested in just one dimension of the ministry while others will participate in multiple modules and seek certification.

For many years, BC Conference has provided a training certificate program for ministry with youth. According to Youth & Young Adult Conference Minister, Doris Kizinna, the time is ripe to review that initiative. Gaye and Doris will work to identify and develop appropriate learning modules that may be common and beneficial to both ministry with youth and ministry with children and their families. Specialized modules will focus upon the particular challenges and opportunities of each area.

The proposal is expected no later than June 13, 2014.

For further information contact Gaye Sharpe.

  Click here to download contract description