Why You Should Give More Money To Teenagers

If you’ve attended Connexus in the past 10 months you’ve probably heard about Thrive, our financial initiative to help our community live with margin so we can live on mission.

As a part of our high school ministry, we talk a lot about “Love Moves”; our opportunities for students to make a difference by serving our church community, our local community, and our global community. As a part of Love Moves, we decided to use Thrive as an opportunity to put our student’s creativity to the test.  Can you make a difference on a budget?  If a student decides to live with margin, what difference can a small budget really make in our world?

We gave each small group $50 and gave them one simple instruction.  You have 25 minutes to decide how you can make a real difference in the world around you with this money.  After a 25 minute brainstorm, students presented what they decided to do over the next month, and they will be reporting back to their peers soon.

Here’s a sneak peek of a few things we saw:

Complete with a gift and dinner, one small group put on a Christmas party for a teenage friend who is currently out of touch with their family and would have been on their own this Christmas.

Another group invested the $50 in doing some baking, sold the baked goods, and donated that money to the Barrie food bank.  Then they served at a local “Out of the Cold” program to get an idea of the needs that are out there.  Another group did a similar baking project for the Orillia Pregnancy Resource Centre.

One group decided to put together a father/daughter date night for a girl and her dad who is battling some serious health issues.

One group invested the money in providing a 0% interest loan to a business owner in a third world country through www.kiva.org.  Once the owner pays back the loan, they will loan it out again.

What does all of this mean?

Students can be great stewards of money when you give them the chance to turn up the “passion dial” in their lives.

When we serve like Jesus on the outside, we become more like Him on the inside.  Some of these experiences were transforming for our students, and we can’t wait for the night they report what they did.

The learning for all of us: You can make an eternal investment on an earthly budget.

Jeff Brodie, Director of Student Ministry



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