Amy's March Update

Grabbing a meal with my coworkers and a youth!
At this point I am not sure what to update you on. I currently feel like I am stagnant. Working with middle schoolers can sometimes feel like there is no progress being made. Sometimes it feels like everyone else on the team is having great success in building relationships with students and I am “stuck” in preventative youth ministry. This feeling is not real. It does not determine my success. I know that I am currently investing in younger youth to build long term, lasting relationships built on years of trust.

This is how I felt a few weeks ago and I continue to feel this way from time to time. Sometimes it is hard to gauge the connection I am having with middle school students. A lot of conversations seem to be surface level and of little importance, but I find it easy to forget what it means to the youth to have someone they trust to talk to.

I was feeling this way before spring break, until my phone lit up with multiple messages from different youth wanting to connect over the school break. One of the ways we can gauge whether or not we are having meaningful connections with youth is if they are initiating conversations with us as youth workers. When youth start to reach out and connect with us first, that is when we can tell that there is a foundation of trust being built.

Sometimes this job is difficult and emotional. Sometimes we need to call the police when youth are in danger, or meet with school principals and counselors to prevent students from harming themselves or others. Those meetings can take hours and be very emotionally draining. Sometimes it means calling child protection services to make sure that youth are safe. But at other times, you get a glimpse of the joy you are helping foster. Sometimes you see a youth break barriers that you did not know would be possible for them. Sometimes they move on to succeed and exceed what everyone thought was possible of them. I know this stagnant patch will pass, and there will be many more youth that have amazing transformations.

Thank you, again, for your ongoing support! It can literally mean life or death in some situations and I am so thankful for the opportunity to be able to advocate for these students and help them succeed. Words cannot begin to describe how thankful I am for your support and prayers.

- Amy Seiler

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