Junior Young Friends
In the wake of a global pandemic, the Youth Programs of Baltimore Yearly Meeting is having to switch gears and find creative alternatives to our tradition in-person gatherings. Our conferences have been an invaluable part of the personal and spiritual growth of so many of our young people and we want to make sure that we are still able to provide them with some sort of love and support in these trying times.
On May 2nd, the Youth Programs Committee will host an online meeting that will incorporate a few elements from our conferences. We will have a check-in for the JYFs, a worship sharing to share appreciations about the year, and have an option for a role playing game. Please stay tuned for more information about our virtual con.
As one of the youth programs of Baltimore Yearly Meeting, we hold a series of weekend retreats for 6th-8th graders, whom we call Junior Young Friends (JYFs). JYF conferences or “cons” are held at different Quaker Meetinghouses throughout the school year. Cons are a fun way to see friends from other Meetings, camp, make new friends, and retreat from the pressures of teenage life, while still developing skills around living in community and having a lot of fun. Jossie Dowling, the BYM Youth Programs Manager, facilitates these weekends in conjunction with the Youth Programs Committee.
When attending a conference, please bring a sleeping bag, sleeping pad, clothes, toiletries, Registration and Medical Release Forms, and fee ($40). Checks can be made payable to BYM, and credit card payments can be made by following the online registration link on the right. Many JYFs also enjoy bringing things to help them foster relationships like music, sports equipment, or games.
JYFs are not the only people at a JYF con. Adults also participate in the community. We call them Friendly Adult Presences (FAPs). To become a FAP, mail an application to the BYM office. You will be informed of the next available training. While adults plan the program and meals at these conferences, JYFs are required to participate in cooking, cleaning, and making decisions that affect the group.
You can click on the link to the right to register, and pay, for upcoming conferences.