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/ 2 June 2023

Volunteers: Could this be the next step for you?

A call to consider stepping beyond volunteering with children or young people in your church and consider joining the Diocese of London’s Apprentice Programme…

Every week in churches across our diocese, thousands of people volunteer to do something specifically with and for children and young people – usually outside of the adult service.

For many people this is helping with something already happening, and for some of us, it is a real calling – to disciple and invest in the next generation of Christians who will go on to become beacons of hope in the world for Christ. For some of us, doing this feels so great that we dream of doing it as a job.

But the workers are few and it’s becoming more difficult for churches to afford employing a fully qualified and experienced person.

For those who feel called to working with children and youth beyond volunteering, but don’t feel a degree-level qualification is within reach – or have already previously completed a degree – we invite you to consider joining the Apprentice Programme in 2023.


About the Apprentice Programme

The Apprentice Programme is an opportunity to receive professional training whilst working in the context of your church – doing 5 hours of study time and 16 hours of work – paid at the London Living Wage. The programme is completely free for those studying and awards a Cert HE after 3 years of part-time study. You’ll be employed by the Diocese of London but working directly with your own church leader, within a community you’re already familiar with.


“When I first started my role, I had many anxieties. But I have grown to love my work with children and young people…I’ve done things that I never thought I could before.”

– Programme Graduate


What kind of people are we looking for?

Apprentices will simply have a heart for youth and/or children’s ministry, with a desire to serve their local community through the church. You don’t have to be skilled in all the areas that you’d expect from a paid children or youth worker, just aspiring to achieve skills through training and experience. Ideally, you’ll already have some experience in volunteering or working with children or young people.

We’ve had people from all walks and rhythms of life become apprentices, there is no age barrier! Whether you are academically inclined or not, you can become an apprentice.

Apprentices on the programme so far have done things like:

  • Establish a children’s or youth group from scratch
  • Lead a Youth Alpha course
  • Support lunchtime clubs in a local school
  • Outreach through activities like football and dance
  • Volunteer at a local charity supporting young refugees and asylum seekers.


Interested? How to apply

The process is a bit strange in that your church has to apply. Get in touch with your vicar as soon as possible as the deadline for this year’s programme is 22 June (to start in September)!  Your church will submit an expression of interest and we’ll take it from there.

Find out more about the Apprentice Programme at london.anglican.org/cyw-apprentices


Know a volunteer who should read this?

If you have someone in your church that would make an amazing apprentice and your church is able to contribute towards the costs of the programme, please share this article with them today.

Here’s a template you can use:


The Diocese of London are currently offering places for people involved in children or youth ministry to become ‘apprentices’, meaning three years working within the context of our church whilst you gain a qualification with Ridley London, whilst being paid to do so. I think you would make a brilliant apprentice. Take a look at this article, have a think/pray and let me know if you’re interested:




Growing Younger is a priority for churches in the Diocese of London as we work towards our 2030 Vision – find out more and sign up for helpful content, resources and advice here.



About Levi Phillips

Levi is the Creative Lead for Growing Younger, a priority of the 2030 Vision for churches in the Diocese of London. Levi is part of the Children & Youth Support team, volunteers in youth ministry and leads worship at his local church. Levi completed a degree in Applied Theology before working in marketing and design in the corporate space, bringing both worlds together in his current role.

Read more from Levi Phillips

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