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Youth Center

Post by joecool on January 21st 2015, 5:58 pm

What a busy couple of months! Working for everybody but myself. Even Christmas break wasn't a break. I've got a biiiig project going on right now, and I could really use part of your brains.

In order to save your eyesight, I'll skip all the stuff that led up to it. But the Lord wants me to open up a non-denominational youth center in town. It's focus is on reaching un-churched high school students. You know how Rangers grow, right? Physically, spiritually, mentally and socially. Those would be the four corners of the youth center. And I know it would cost a lot. But I've had some previous success with the Montana philanthropist down the road, having learned what touches his heart (and opens his checkbook). So two of the corners have his priorities in mind: 1) guidance counseling - especially towards high tech, and 2) outreach/discipleship. So that kind of takes care of spiritually and mentally.

What suggestions do you have for physically and socially? I'm looking for "hooks" to get the un-churched through the doors. And what are some hard questions that you would ask, either as a parent, donor, or board member? Addressing them could really help me avoid future problems, and make the youth center a better sell. Thanks for whatever help you can provide, guys.

Some potential names: 4-On-The-Floor Youth Center, Cross-Training Youth Center, Future U. Youth Center...anything catch your fancy yet?

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on January 21st 2015, 10:28 pm

How about, "Helena Professional Development Center".

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Re: Youth Center

Post by strods on January 21st 2015, 11:14 pm

I would think that physically would be the easiest to obtain/ manage. If you are looking for standards you have everything from the President's Physical Fitness Test, to the Marine Corp requirements, either of which I could get you to specs on. While I'm not suggesting you spend the entire time in PT, some wouldn't hurt. And it doesn't have to be standard formal exercise. Get a pick up ball game going on, let them sweat it out.

For a management standpoint, for your board etc, just have an excel form around to log who, what, how long. Keep the pencil pushers happy with numbers.

Socially... getting along with others. 2 aspects. 1 actually getting along, engagement and conflict resolution. 2. Leadership. Perhaps consider a counterpart roles to patrol guides for those who exceed your expectations with the program. You 'll need the help.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on January 21st 2015, 11:33 pm

I'm going to modify my suggestion:

"Helena Institute for Professional Development".

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on January 22nd 2015, 7:08 am

You might want to check out Bridges for Youth.  They do the same type of thing.
Your talking out of my league on this one.  Best goto the folks that have done this type of thing before.  

Mark Jones


joecool wrote:What a busy couple of months! Working for everybody but myself. Even Christmas break wasn't a break. I've got a biiiig project going on right now, and I could really use part of your brains.

In order to save your eyesight, I'll skip all the stuff that led up to it. But the Lord wants me to open up a non-denominational youth center in town. It's focus is on reaching un-churched high school students. You know how Rangers grow, right? Physically, spiritually, mentally and socially. Those would be the four corners of the youth center. And I know it would cost a lot. But I've had some previous success with the Montana philanthropist down the road, having learned what touches his heart (and opens his checkbook). So two of the corners have his priorities in mind: 1) guidance counseling - especially towards high tech, and 2) outreach/discipleship. So that kind of takes care of spiritually and mentally.

What suggestions do you have for physically and socially? I'm looking for "hooks" to get the un-churched through the doors. And what are some hard questions that you would ask, either as a parent, donor, or board member? Addressing them could really help me avoid future problems, and make the youth center a better sell. Thanks for whatever help you can provide, guys.

Some potential names: 4-On-The-Floor Youth Center, Cross-Training Youth Center, Future U. Youth Center...anything catch your fancy yet?  


Last edited by Mark Jones on March 16th 2015, 8:35 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : They seem to have missed the point on this one.)
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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on March 9th 2015, 12:26 am

Making progress towards the youth center. Talked to a few people who run facilities. Filing for non-profit status (note to self: don't include "patriot" or "tea party" in our name). Meeting a building owner on Thursday to get a closer look. It's big and high, which gives us the ability to do sports inside during the winter. The big grant request goes out in May. I know that it's not "if", but "when". The foundation's response will answer that one for sure.

Visited a neighboring city's youth center, which is located right across the street from a high school. They're open before school, during lunch and for a couple hours after school. Their center is basically a place for kids to hang out until they have to be somewhere else. When I told the director what I envisioned for my center, he said "That's not like us at all. What you're planning to open is a destination." Exactly. An illuminating and defining moment. So, we might call ourselves Destination Youth Center.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by ccm2361 on March 9th 2015, 6:42 pm

Cool! glad to hear things are progressing.
thanks for the update

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on March 10th 2015, 5:02 pm

My son in law had a little experience with this. The church was across the street from the High and Junior High school. Opened on Wednesdays and the youth all came over there to hang out.

I don't know how many times they had to call the police. I know many times they had to bust up the pot smokers in the back of the church. Had to break up a fight about every day.

Lots of things to consider. One of my sons friends worked for Bridges for Youth. I don't think he liked it very much. Big difference between church kids and worldly kids. Whole different world.
Boys club was pretty much like the same. Very rough crowd in there.
Lots of unsaved souls. Lots of drama and violence.

I don't know if it's better to be out there in the middle of all that or wait until the still small voice speaks to them and convicts and sends them looking for the creator of the universe.

The world is a rough place.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on March 10th 2015, 10:36 pm

Mark Jones wrote: The world is a rough place.

The youth center we visited originally had a middle school and high school across the street. The younger kids were 95% of their problems. Then the city built a new middle school in a different location and combined the rest into just a high school campus. The directors said life was good after that. Go figure.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on March 10th 2015, 10:50 pm

Good points brought up, all 'round.

Do you steer away from kids who are tough cases? We all know that, sometimes, there are the 4% of kids who take valuable training time away from the others. If we don't put the extra effort into them, who will?

On the other hand, Jesus said to not cast your pearls before swine. I take that to mean, when you have a limited amount of valuable resources, use them wisely, and do not squander them in frivolous directions that are unlikely to produce results.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on March 11th 2015, 9:57 am

One thing about coming up with a whole new idea there are things you don't see that affect things drasticly.  

Our National office is an example of this.  They didn't do a tweak they did a revamp almost making it a new program and the end result was major decline from what they originally had.   (now having said that)  Not every new idea program is a bad idea.  I just have found out by experience that most ideas don't work for various reasons.  Yet tweaking a working idea fine tunes and can produce a better program.  

I admire your courage to step out and go after something of a horse of a different color. Yet (grin) I wouldn't want to be in your shoes.   If God is in it (like the original Royal Rangers program was for the most part) it will work.  If it's just a good idea out of the mind of man.  It will flop all over the place before it passes on.

Not condemning or recommending anything. Just beaware the odds are against it working unless God is in it.  Then odds make no difference.  
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Last edited by Mark Jones on March 16th 2015, 8:38 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : They seem to have missed this point.)
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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on March 11th 2015, 2:12 pm

I believe that Bruce has several things going to enhance his probability of success.

He has literally seen Youth Organizations and Career Development Schools around the world.

He has the security of being retired from the Military, and so his family will not depend on the quick success of this program.

He has the experience of commanding a staff of several hundred men, and so he knows how to "stamp out fires" and anticipate problems before they happen.

He has been financially responsible for a ship (that I would estimate had a worth of $200,000,000.00 to $500,000,000.00).  So I expect that he can handle a building and equipment worth $150,000.00.

In fact, back in the day, I'll bet that he could have $150,000.00 fall off the deck of his ship and write it off as a "Training Loss".

He obviously feels that God has put him where he is for a reason, and that God has given him the Assets-at-Hand for a reason.  I can tell that he does not believe in squandering those Assets.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on March 11th 2015, 6:36 pm

Wherever I've gone and been, "I" have come up with ideas that were adopted Navy-wide, by my schools or my churches. I'm used to the things God puts into my heart and mind. And that's the key. I know they don't come from me. Sometimes they come through after a couple of hours' thought. Sometimes they come through after a couple of years' prayer. The youth center is the latter.

(P.S. My biggest loss was my supply clerk ordering the wrong kind of mooring line. It's kind of like mixing tires on a vehicle. Not a good idea. It wasn't $6000 down the drain, though. We held on to it and later traded it in for a free paint job overseas. Wink )

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on March 11th 2015, 6:52 pm

Doing a clandestine night-infiltration from a Coast Guard Cutter onto the beach of one of the islands of Hawaii, we had a Zodiak capsize, when it hit the breakers.

Small calamity for a while, but we eventually continued with the mission.

Some time later, each member was asked what he may be missing from his Issued Field Equipment.  The "official story" was that anything missing was written up as being on the boat that capsized, and written off the Property Book as a Training Loss.

(I never figured out what that Arctic Canteen Cup or Extreme Cold Weather Mittens were doing in that boat off the coast of Hawaii.)

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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on March 11th 2015, 10:36 pm

Claymore wrote:Doing a clandestine night-infiltration from a Coast Guard Cutter onto the beach of one of the islands of Hawaii, we had a Zodiak capsize, when it hit the breakers.

We didn't get quite that far one night off the northern coast of Oahu. The plan was to lower the sterngate, put a couple of Zodiacs with Marine recon on it, lower the gate into the water and that's that. I kept telling their CO it was too rough, and he complained to my CO. Give it shot, I'm told. So I kept the Zodiacs far forward while I lowered the sterngate. A couple of minutes later, a 6-foot swell came in, tumbling me and my comm guy towards the Zodiacs. Picked my soaking self up, looked at the Marines and they quietly put their gear away.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on March 12th 2015, 12:25 am

Man, that was a LOT like our operation.

When you were describing it, I was wondering if we were talking about the same infil, but I'm 99.9% certain that we launched off of a USCG vessel (but we launched off the SIDE of the ship [gangway exit?], and we DID make the Infil).

The ROUGHEST part was when we were in the Zodiacs, and they tried getting the motors to us.  One second, there we were level with the ship's deck, and 1/4 second later, we were 15 feet below it.

We knew that, if the sailors let go of the Outboard, and it fell 15 feet, it would hit the floor of the Zodiac, and keep on going.

I don't recall the name of the island that we landed on.  I only recall it as jungle and Ammo Bunkers, and there was a rough landing strip that we had to put Bean-Bag Lights on for the Herc's to come in for the Exfil.

It seemed like it was 3 or 4 hours sailing time from Oahu, and about a half-hour to get back by C-130.

P.S. God Bless the Marines.  We did several missions with them, and I love them.  But when we did work with them, they always took 5 times as many training casualties as we did.

Also...

Sorry 'bout "chasing rabbits" on this thread. We just got talking about the "Good Old Days", and I got kind-of excited.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on March 12th 2015, 5:12 pm

I really don't think the leader makes the difference in this respect.  I wasn't even looking at it from a leadership aspect. I was looking at it from a logistics point of view and what I knew of programs that are in this process at this time.  It's sounds good but there is a very very long list that tells me it won't work.  Yet if God is in it it will work.  It will take a supernatural move of God to get it to go.  My opinion and I hope my opinion is wrong.

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Claymore wrote:I believe that Bruce has several things going to enhance his probability of success.
He has literally seen Youth Organizations and Career Development Schools around the world.

He has the security of being retired from the Military, and so his family will not depend on the quick success of this program.

He has the experience of commanding a staff of several hundred men, and so he knows how to "stamp out fires" and anticipate problems before they happen.

He has been financially responsible for a ship (that I would estimate had a worth of $200,000,000.00 to $500,000,000.00).  So I expect that he can handle a building and equipment worth $150,000.00.

In fact, back in the day, I'll bet that he could have $150,000.00 fall off the deck of his ship and write it off as a "Training Loss".

He obviously feels that God has put him where he is for a reason, and that God has given him the Assets-at-Hand for a reason.  I can tell that he does not believe in squandering those Assets.


Last edited by Mark Jones on March 16th 2015, 8:34 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : They seem to have missed this point so I made it large!)
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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on March 12th 2015, 5:32 pm

Mark Jones wrote: It's sounds good but there is a very very long list that tells me it won't work.

At the very beginning of this thread, I asked all the wise ones for info that would help me sort things out. In between the poles you climb, will you think of some specifics that will help me? Much appreciated.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on March 12th 2015, 8:25 pm

While I do climb poles and visit these places many times over  and have friends and relatives that work in these places... I am limited to what they tell me.  I just am relaying what I have been told and experienced.  

If God is in it.  He can even use a pole climber to give you a heads up after all he can use a donkey.  Were pretty close in the gene pool.  GRIN!

This follows along the same line in my thinking..but maybe not yours.
I get a kick out of new guys that come into our District. They all have some neat ideas that have been tried many times over. They say hey I got a idea can we do this can we do that. After a while you just say..it's been tried a number of ways and no matter how you slice it still doesn't work. The only way you can prove it to them is let them do it. When it all falls in on them... be kind and soon they join the ranks and start telling the next new guy... the same thing they got told. It's a loop that has to repeat itself. That's how most of us learn. I did the same thing.

I don't agree with my daughters ministry to the woman trafficing/strip clubs either. I just tell her to be careful those guys play for keeps and they don't care who they hurt. I pray for God's hedge around them as they minister to these girls. I would rather for God the Holy Spirit to move on these girls hearts to get out of that and turn from it and find a Church and turn their lives over to Christ. Church ladies going into a strip club and giving gifts to the strippers is a venue that leaves me wondering if it will work. Just like Youth Destination I can't see it but time will tell.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by RRCmdrBennett on March 16th 2015, 9:07 am

Mark, sometimes I find a new perspective from a fresh set of eyes can let us see things we overlooked. We shouldn't close our minds off completely.

Mark, that ministry of your daughters is definitely risky but if she has a calling then just trust God. Old time religious leaders criticized Jesus for eating and drinking in the company of sinners. He wasn't sinning by being there. Yes, the men who enslave those girls do play for keeps and life to them is cheap.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on March 16th 2015, 8:57 pm

In almost every post in this thread I added a large font to show exactly what you requested. If God is in it it will work.
New ideas and different approachs I do on a daily basis. As I said before. If you feel froggy jump for it. That is the only way you will learn if it works or won't. There are a lot of things I won't waste my time on jumping for. Already learned it doesn't work. GRIN! Yet there is a new guy that hasn't learned it yet. So let them jump and learn. That is how I learned.

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RRCmdrBennett wrote:Mark, sometimes I find a new perspective from a fresh set of eyes can let us see things we overlooked. We shouldn't close our minds off completely.

Mark, that ministry of your daughters is definitely risky but if she has a calling then just trust God. Old time religious leaders criticized Jesus for eating and drinking in the company of sinners. He wasn't sinning by being there. Yes, the men who enslave those girls do play for keeps and life to them is cheap.  
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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on April 24th 2015, 12:52 am

Hey, guys, if you could pray for this, I'd appreciate it. My friend and I have approached a local businessman who has room for a youth center. If God's in this, He can speak to the gentleman. Thanks.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Claymore on April 24th 2015, 1:42 am

Our prayers are with you & your endeavor.

Who knows? Maybe it will be a better Project, if you have to start modest and scrap for it, rather than to be fully financially backed.

Our American Legion Post is considering having me start a Youth Marksmanship Program. My strongest recommendation is, "Don't give it for free, because the kids will think that it is worth exactly what they paid for it." I suggested that they have the kids help with work-days at Legion Activities in order to participate in the Program.

Often, what we think is best and what the Lord thinks is best are two different things.

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Re: Youth Center

Post by joecool on July 13th 2015, 7:59 pm

We have a building for the youth center and the first year's funding is in place. Start-up is probably late Sept. God is good!

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Re: Youth Center

Post by Mark Jones on July 14th 2015, 1:03 pm

Congratulations. You have 2 big hurdles over come. You and my daughter both have shown me I have a lot to learn. Keep on teaching me. I am glad God doesn't consult with me before he moves on peoples hearts.

I am called to RR ministry. I have seen more mistakes done in that ministry and yet many things do work and work well.

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