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Children & Youth: Children and Youth Apprentice Programme

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Apply to join the programme

Deadline for interest: 18 July 2023

Download the Application Form for churches by clicking the button below.

For any questions about joining the programme, contact our Apprentice Programme Coordinator  Emma Biddle or call on
020 3837 5139

The Apprentice Programme, funded by SMMIB funding, aims to start new mission activity among children and youth in church communities across the Diocese of London, and raise up a new generation of children and youth workers from within our communities. In September, we are looking to recruit eight apprentices.

The programme works alongside churches in the Diocese of London to develop their ministry among children and young people, through employing and training apprentice youth and/or children’s workers to work within churches for three full years.

Apprentices are employed by the Diocese of London, and work under the direction and support of the church leadership team to begin, establish or develop the youth and/or children’s ministry in that church.

Apprentices also study Theology, Ministry and Mission with Ridley London, the London training centre of Ridley Hall Cambridge. They are paid the London Living Wage and gain valuable experience of church ministry with children and young people.

“We have loved benefiting from this scheme and wouldn’t have been able to do many of the things that are taking place and growing through St Luke’s without it.”

– Church leader

“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

Hear from Apprentices

About the programme

We’ve answered a few FAQs below, but if you have any other questions please get in touch. We’d love to hear from you!

Click to expand the information below.

How much does it cost?

The diocese employs the apprentices directly with funding, and churches are asked to contribute £7,000 per year towards the costs.

There is no cost to apprentices, who are paid a salary at London Living Wage which is recalculated every November. The academic course is paid for by the diocese.

The programme structure

Apprentices are employed for 21 hours a week:

  • 16 hours in the church context
  • 5 hours set aside for study

The curriculum is broken down as follows:

Year 1 Apprentices complete an introductory level 4 module in “Foundations in Theology, Ministry and Mission”, studying at Ridley London, with a focus on youth and children’s work. This gives them access to the Cert HE in years 2 and 3.
2 & 3
Apprentices complete the Cert HE (Level 4) course in “Foundations in Theology, Ministry and Mission” with a focus on youth and children’s work.

What do we look for in an apprentice?

A potential candidate for the scheme needs to demonstrate that they want to pursue this opportunity because they have a heart for youth and/or children’s ministry, as well as a genuine desire to serve their local community through the church. It is not anticipated at the start that the apprentice will be fully skilled in all areas of the job description, but that they will be aspiring to achieve them through training and experience.

Examples of what apprentices on the programme have done so far:

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


To join the programme, potential candidates need to demonstrate:

  • They are a practicing Christian
  • Qualifications obtained at Level 2 (GCSE or NVQ) in Maths, English and IT (or a willingness to work to obtain these in the first year of the scheme)
  • Experience in youth/children’s work
  • Sound knowledge of Microsoft Office applications.


Aptitudes and abilities of an applying individual

  • Willingness to commit to a three-year programme which will include study, theory-based assessments, regular attendance at college and additional learning activities
  • An ability to engage and work with young people and adults
  • A readiness to reflect on experiences and learning
  • A commitment to others and to work for equal opportunities
  • An ability to manage different aspects of life and to work on own initiative
  • An ability to communicate in a friendly and professional manner with others face-to-face, via telephone and in writing
  • A clear Enhanced DBS check (to be carried out by the Diocese at offer stage)
  • An ability to integrate well into a small team environment
  • Self-motivated, enthusiastic and an ability to manage their own workload.


Personal attributes

  • High personal integrity
  • Flexible in approach
  • Ability to work confidentially
  • Sympathetic to the aims of the Church of England.

What do we look for in a church?

The programme is open to churches in the Diocese of London. We are looking primarily for churches with a potential apprentice within their congregation, however there is a possibility that a suitable apprentice could be recruited externally.

Churches will be supported to write a Project Bid for funding, demonstrating their suitability.

To be considered, churches must show that they have the following:

  • A vision to meet local needs
  • A long term mind-set
  • The vision and ability to line-manage an apprentice well
  • An intention to integrate the apprentice into the leadership/staff team
  • The ability to combine realism with flexibility
  • An intention to engage the whole church
  • The vision to build a strong volunteer base
  • A focus on building relationships
  • An intention to integrate faith and discipleship
  • A ‘Whole Life’ approach to people

An initial application form for churches can be found at the bottom of this page.

The application process

If you are a church or a potential apprentice and are interested in applying to the programme, please get in touch so that we can send you the right documents and support you through the process.

Recruitment round one:

  • Deadline for applications:  18 July 2023

Required responsibilities

The programme requires a commitment from host churches, the diocese, and Ridley Hall to provide the following:

Church Diocese of London Ridley Hall
Line Management Employment Cert HE (Level 4) in Theology, Mission and Ministry, with a focus on Youth and Children’s work
Paying the church fee Line manager and apprentice support Study support
Project and apprentice running costs Apprentice social events and specialised training
Providing an appropriate supervisor

Apply to join the programme

Deadline for interest: 18 July 2023

Download the Application Form for churches by clicking the button below.

For any questions about joining the programme, contact our Apprentice Programme Coordinator  Emma Biddle or call on 020 3837 5139

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