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December 4, 2011
15 people found this review helpful

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December 4, 2011
15 people found this review helpful

It’s Sunday afternoon and my step-daughter just returned from a young life weekend camp trip, and I’m not happy. First of all, I just assumed this organization was part of the school, because she brought home the information from school---I thought. There was some kind of permission slip I signed weeks ago, but those things get signed so fast in the morning, I can’t say I paid attention. So the trip was reintroduced on Thursday and I checked the website [lakechampion.younglife.org] in advanced of the trip on Thursday night. But obviously not closely enough. I just kind of did a cursory review of the location, the facilities, but didn’t read about them in depth, because I’m still assuming this is a school sanctioned trip. Because of the cursory nature of my review, I HAD NO IDEA this organization had anything to do with religion!!!. Now I freely admit, that’s my fault and I take responsibility for not reading the website closely.

My first real clue that religion was involved came when my step daughter called me today before the return trip to say how much fun she had and that at one point there was a discussion about “how God can change your life”. Antennas immediately went up now --- WHAT? Back to the website ---this time the parent organization website, not the lakechampion local site--, and now I’m paying attention. So the website says:


Young Life brings the good news of Jesus Christ into the lives of adolescents with an approach that is respectful of who kids are and hopeful about who they can be.  

Also this excerpt, from http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2008/february/1.13.html:
Following a November statement outlining the “Non-negotiables of Young Life’s Gospel Proclamation,” YL's eight-page Non-Negotiables statement requires a sequence for gospel presentations that closely resembles Campus Crusade for Christ's Four Spiritual Laws. Talks must begin with the person of Jesus Christ, "the overarching theme of all our talks." From there, evangelists should explain the reality and consequences of sin before presenting the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his resurrection. Talks end with an invitation to believe, become a disciple of Jesus, and publicly proclaim one's faith.

Immediately I want to know, who are these YoungLife people and what is their history?? I notice they’re global and have been around since the 40s. That means there is some substantial money behind them. Where do they get their money? Who are the present and past characters on their board of directors and what are their individual histories? All these questions pop into my mind. So, now I’m aware I should have launched a research project behind this organization and I have neither the time or inclination to do this. My knowledge of the self-serving history of Christian proselytizing and it’s often damaging, global impact leaves me extremely uneasy. And if that weren’t enough, these contemporary Christian fundamentalists are a truly scary and dangerous bunch and I want no part of them.

I’m particularly outraged since this “batch” of students that attended the camp is mostly immigrant, mostly children of color and a significant percentage have Islamic background. Even though I didn’t complete my homework, I feel deceived. I probably would not feel so if there had been a direct one sentence, bold highlighted, large font declaration of younglife’s organizational intent on the form they sent home for signature. The young lady who was my step daughter’s contact for the organization said there was a brochure that accompanied the waiver, release, but I don’t remember it. In any case, this information was sent home some weeks in advance of the trip so there is that disconnect between the information delivery and the actual trip---enough time to forget. Bottom line, this entire experience leaves me extremely disturbed and wary. I’m especially distressed that they have manipulated the mentality of the young person so that now, when we parents have to come back with a sharp counter analysis, of course the adolescent only remembers how much fun she just had. This is insidious and underhanded. I will be following up with the school, as many of the other parents I can contact and if necessary we will launch an internet advisory warning other unsuspecting parents.

Finally, I notice all the reviews on this page are glowing with the exception of mine and another mother who submitted her evaluation a few days prior to mine. It’s obvious that you get all the kids to write in. We’ll see if we can get some more parents who have been equally blindsided to weigh in on the discussion.

More feedback...

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

No

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

December 3, 2011
5 people found this review helpful

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1 previous review
December 2, 2010

My daughter got involved with Young Life because a friend was into it, as was her high school assistant soccer coach. It was promoted as a fun thing for kids to do, and it is. However, it is also, and... more

December 3, 2011
5 people found this review helpful

Young Life is an evangelical fundamentalist Christian organization that seeks out children when they are out of their parent's view. They send college aged kids to your child's school, lure them with donuts before school in the parking lot, or lurk around after school while they are at sports practice. They tell the kids they are going to be in the gutter soon: drinking, druggin;, wanton sex OR they are going to find Jesus (via emotional manipulation and group dynamics). No other choice. YL realizes they are in violation of many Supreme Court rulings prohibiting religious proselytizing on public school grounds, so they clandestinely pull the parking lot/sports practice deal. Creepers. YL caused the biggest rift in our relationship with our teen we had ever experienced before or since.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

None

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

No

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Badly

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

December 2, 2010
8 people found this review helpful

My daughter got involved with Young Life because a friend was into it, as was her high school assistant soccer coach. It was promoted as a fun thing for kids to do, and it is. However, it is also, and it states so clearly on their website, an evangelical Protestant organization. Their Articles of Faith sound quite fundamentalist to me. Eventually my child got sucked in because she is a teenager (15) and teens love to hang out with peers, party, go to fun camps, etc. Oh yeah, and they are indoctrinated and encouraged to accept Christ, whatever exactly that means, read the Bible every day, etc. Nothing has caused such a rift in our family as this Young Life experience. My daughter will not talk to me about what all goes on at the camp and the meetings, because she knows her parents are not Christians. I find it weird that adults and young adults will do things like go to my kid's sports games, theater performances, etc, pick them up after school to take them to their house to 'talk' and study the Bible. Obviously, Young Life knows that kids of this age are very impressionable and easily influenced by their peers, and especially by peers slightly older than they. This is an evangelical organization, it is not quite upfront about its intentions, and it is manipulative in targeting middle school/high school, and thereby very easily influenced, children.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Virginia

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

keep it away from minor children

September 14, 2011
2 people found this review helpful

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September 14, 2011
2 people found this review helpful

My life is better for having been a part of Young Life, and I've seen it transform the lives of dozens of teenagers. Being a part of a teenager's life is has a lasting effect on communities as well as the individual kids, and society needs it more than we recognize (http://t.co/hihwxS4). Young Life trains leaders well to enter into the lives of kids and show them what life is really about.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Volunteer leading

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

May 24, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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May 24, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

Young Life is personal. Everything is done with excellence. It's fun to be apart of a high school friend's life. Know what is going on in their lives and care for them no matter what they do. Earning the right to be heard.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing the lives changed from when we meet them to when they graduate and more onto college and the real world. Even if the transformation is small, getting the front row seat is a privilege.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Try to get Young Life more exposure. It's the best kept secret in our community. Young Life needs to be known by the world and our community to see the transformations in high school kids.

January 20, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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January 20, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

We have close, and first-hand experience with Young Life as former YL "kids," adult committee volunteers, parents of YL kids and as donors.



I have known Young Life personally for more than 34 years and in all that time, in so many encounters, Young Life never ceases to
amaze me.



I am thoroughly impressed by the caliber of their people, the winsome ways of their relationship building, their professionalism in all business matters, the hospitality they extend to kids and adults alike, their investment in first-rate resort facilities to give kids the best week of their lives and the honest, relevant, and respectful way that they share the truth of God's love with words kids can understand and with actions that demonstrate what his love looks like.



I am convinced that my encounter with Young Life changed the trajectory and purpose of my life, my husband's life, and now, our children's lives. I remain ever grateful for the gift of Young Life and whole-heartedly endorse and commend its work in the U.S. and around the world.



Every teenager should hear the words that they are precious, and priceless to God with a purpose that only God can imagine. I love that YL takes seriously the charge to make certain that EVERY kid hears that message and brings the rest of us along to partner in that work.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've experienced the results of this organization in my own life--in the lives of my Young Life friends who are my closest friends even after 34 years. I experience YL in our marriage as we share a commitment to offer kids a chance to hear a life-affirming and life-changing message, and we see it in the lives of our children--watching our son as a college freshman with a heart for high school kids like he was to hear and experience God's unchanging love in a fluid and too often frenzied world.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I am hard-pressed to find a flaw in the organization. As a committee member helping to financially support YL staff and leaders in our area, I wish we had a more sophisticated database tool for tracking and recording interactions over many years with so many kids, parents, donors and friends of Young Life.

November 20, 2010
8 people found this review helpful

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November 20, 2010
8 people found this review helpful

My nieces are involved with Young Life and frankly, if they were my children i would forbid it. My problem with the group is that they sell themselves as non-denominational, yet they are brainwashing and converting those girls make no doubt about it. They are not a youth group - they are a Protestant bible study group. We are Catholic, we have a faith yet they like to go to YL because they have a very active youth group, they plan weekend trips, take them skiing and even to Disneyland (from Seattle!). Of course, the kids want to go! Example, I was asking my 16 yr old niece Hailey about YL, and at one point I said you are Catholic, and she snapped back, I'm a Christian! I said true, Catholics are Xtians. She shook her head and stormed off (she is a teenager after all). It upset me that these people are obviously telling her that Catholics are not Xtians, why such animosity against her own religion? Example2, They have YL on Weds night and a rotating movie night at various member homes on Saturday. Hailey's mom asked her to offer their home for movie night. Hailey said no, you cant. "Why?" You just can't you don't go to their church, they don't know you, they wont let you. Meanwhile, all her YL friends are always at the house after school, weekends, at non-YL times, when the parents don't mind. So why, if this is truly non-denominational, are non-Protestants parents not allowed to be involved in YL activities? I could site several examples that individually do not sound like such a big deal, but when viewed in totality, it paints a very clear picture. My Bro&Sis-in-law are complacent about it, figuring its better to associate with Protestants than thugs or stoners. Perhaps, but it is not harmless. They are pushing their Protestant agenda on impressionable kids. Overall, I think it is a great organization for Protestants. However, I do not approve of the way they market themselves as non-denominational when that is clearly not the case. if they want to evangelize they should be honest about it. But then, I am sure their membership would drop markedly as many religious families would not want their kids going to Protestant bible study. Be honest! What a great example of Xtianity, Charlatans in non-denominational clothing!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Witnessing the negative changes in my nieces

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Prohibit them from branding themselves as non-denominational when that is clearly not the case. They are a Protestant evangelical organization. There is nothing wrong with that, just be honest so parents know exactly what their children are getting involved with.

October 10, 2009
7 people found this review helpful

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October 10, 2009
7 people found this review helpful

I first read about Young Life in my local newspaper. I was very surprised as they talk about having a constant presence at sporting events, school dances, and visiting the school cafeteria. Apparently they act friendly to you in order to eventually convert you to Christianity. Although a strictly Christian organization, there is nothing in their symbols, etc. that would lead a defenseless child to be on their guard against this indoctrination. I am appalled at this! If they're going to try to convert my children, they should have the integrity to come right out and say what they're trying to do instead of sneaking it in. I'm not a Christian and it's this sort of behavior that makes me proud of that. The best advice I can give this organization is to mind their own business, stay out of our schools and in my fondest hope, wither and die.

Photos

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

That it's been at a distance.

Ways to make it better...

This organization had never existed.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 4, 2009

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October 4, 2009

I have been a part of Young Life for about four years. In high school,I attended Club and Campaigners, and went on Fall Weekend Trips up to Young Life's Saranac Village. Now, in college, I am volunteering with Young Life Capernaum, which is Young Life for the mentally and physically disabled. This organization has helped me to see who I am in Christ, and helped me to be a better person! Thank you so much for giving me and all of the other students that have participated w/ YL, an amazing opportunity to be blessed and to bless others!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

hearing the testimony from all the campers at Club at the end of the week.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

do nothing, it really is amazing

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

getting to help other teens.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

phenomenal and unique in their own way

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

have YL in every city and Capernaum in every state

Ways to make it better...

x

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

financial

One thing I'd also say is that...

I am so thankful for being able to volunteer w/ Young Life!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 2, 2009

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October 2, 2009

God used several men & women in Young Life to transform my life. I am so thankful for their obedience to God's call on their lives.

Photos

More feedback...

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Provide more grants for kids to take kids to the more than 20 camps. The camps are a resort and life-changing for the majority of the campers that attend each summer.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 2, 2009

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October 2, 2009

I recently voluntered at Timber Wolf Lake in Michigan. I was so blessed by the staff that worked there. I am looking forward to coming back and helping some more.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The friendly staff

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

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