Committee Chair

The Chairperson greatly influences the character and effectiveness of your committee.  Elected by other members, this person will have a unique partnership with the Area Manager built by spending regular time together. As the leader of the committee, the Chair keeps the focus on Christ, calls on members’ gifts and abilities, prepares and leads meetings and mobilises the different task committees.  They also ensure that the committee members share in the ownership of the ministry with the local staff, volunteer leaders, local donors and regional director.

Responsibilities of the Chair:

  • Walk faithfully with Christ to provide spiritual leadership for the committee
  • Be confident in their call to the role and be a leader and motivator
  • In agreement with Young Life Australia’s faith and conduct policies
  • Plan and run the monthly meeting
  • Lead in developing a vision for YL in the community
  • Act as a liaison and advocate between staff and committee
  • Build trust in the ministry
  • Provide leadership in the recruitment, selection, orientation, retention and retirement of committee members
  • Work with committee members to best utilise their talents
  • Maintain a close relationship with staff
  • Stand alongside the staff and bring the rest of the committee along.
  • Maintain close relationships with the staff so staff can communicate needs and problems, as well as successes.

Basic Strategies to Develop

The committee chair working together with the area director should:

  • Develop a good relationship with the area director.
  • Plan effective meetings.
  • Lead effective meetings.
  • Create ownership for the ministry with committee members.
  • Delegate work to committee members.
  • Hold committee members accountable.

At a minimum, the Committee Chair and Area Director should develop the following processes:

  • Recruiting and selecting a committee chair(s).
  • Recruiting, selecting, retaining and retiring committee members.
  • Taking care of staff and if possible volunteer leaders.
  • Implementing basic Taking Donors Seriously (TDS)

Hoyt Jackson has some great tips below for new Committee Chairs.  Have a look at what he has to say.


  • Has the gift of leadership.
  • Can motivate others.
  • Is organized.
  • Is able to plan and lead meetings.
  • Can delegate and hold people accountable.

Time Requirement: 16 hours per month

NOTE: Different areas will have different time requirements, and this should be used as a guide only.  Different times of year as well will have different time pressures.


Like the Chair, the Treasurer has certain responsibilities that require a unique set of experiences and gifts.

Responsibilities of the Treasurer:

  • Walk faithfully with Christ
  • Be confident in their call to the role
  • Have talents with finances, budgeting and/or accounting
  • Together with the Area Manager, assume administrative responsibility for funds involved in committee projects
  • Communicate with the Area Manager to ensure all Young Life Australia financial policies are followed.
  • Prepare and present financial reports received from the National Office at committee meetings
  • Sign off on local area expenses as per the Young Life financial policy
  • Review income and expenditures for the local area
  • Communicate the monthly financial report to the committee
  • Work in close contact with the Chief Financial Officer in National Office
  • Initiate and drive preparation of the annual budget

Basic Strategies to Develop

  • Understanding the impacts of reaching financial targets and how not doing so affects the area, region and national mission.
  • Keep the cash flow realistic with projects by communication with Area Manager and Committee Chair monthly.
  • Anticipate and communicate expenses and income before they occur.


  • Understands the needs for financial health in the area.
  • Maintains confidentiality.
  • Desires to work with numbers.
  • Is organized.
  • Is talented with finances, budgeting and/or accounting.
  • Committed to the position for a minimum of two years

Time Requirement: Eight hours per month

NOTE: Different areas will have different time requirements, and this should be used as a guide only.  Different times of year as well will have different time pressures.

Need to contact Accounts in the National Office?  E:

Go to Committee Resources to find Financial Policies & Forms

Prayer Coordinator

All activities of Young Life need to be underpinned by prayer. Our hope is that everyone on the committee will take time to regularly pray for the ministry. This can be greatly aided by a Prayer Coordinator.


Responsibilities of the Prayer Coordinator:

  • Walk faithfully with Christ
  • Be confident in their call to the role
  • Be committed to prayer
  • Has access to a computer with email
  • Keep in regular contact with the Area Manager to record the prayer needs relating to working with young people
  • Record the prayer needs of committee activities
  • Keep a regular database of prayer supporters on Mail Chimp & ensure that new donors are added to the Mail Chimp List
  • Send monthly / termly (as per area agreement) email prayer requests and praise reports via Mail Chimp

Basic Strategies to Develop

  • Area-Wide Prayer Strategy: Involve as many people as possible from inside and outside the area who will pray for the local Young Life ministry. Obtain general prayer requests from the area director on a monthly basis. It might also be helpful to list answered prayers as well as requests.
  • Develop an e-mail distribution list. Obtain names of people who are willing to pray for the ministry from the committee, donors, church prayer groups, volunteer leaders, staff, banquet list, senior citizens, etc.
  • Committee-Wide Prayer Strategy: The committee should pray as a group for the staff, volunteer leaders and donors and about key issues related to the ministry.
  • Develop an e-mail distribution list of committee members and staff. Check with the area manager and other staff for detailed requests for prayer.
  • Make prayer an important part of the committee meeting. Prayer could be held for an hour before the meeting. Members could meet weekly during lunch at a specific location for prayer.
  • Individual Prayer Strategy: Each committee member should be paired with a specific staff member or volunteer leader to pray specifically for them.
  • The committee member should solicit individual prayer requests from the staff member or volunteer leader.


  • Understands the power of prayer.
  • Has the gift of prayer.
  • Is able to elicit the needs and concerns of others.
  • Good listening skills.
  • Can organize.
  • Computer literate or able to recruit an individual to send out the prayer emails via Mail Chimp.


Time Requirement: 8 hours per month

NOTE: Different areas will have different time requirements, and this should be used as a guide only.  Different times of year as well will have different time pressures.

Ensuring Adequate Financial Support

Guaranteeing the Local Budget

Whilst the committee plays many vital roles in supporting the local Young Life program, perhaps one of the most crucial responsibilities is to prepare a local budget and then create and implement a fundraising plan to guarantee that budget. This responsibility is carried out in partnership with local staff and support from the National Office:

  • Develop a vision statement for the Area
  • Establish an annual budget that supports the vision
  • Create and implement a Financial Master Plan that will help achieve the budget
  • Make your own personal financial commitment to support the Area

Each of this topics are covered in greater depth in the Taking Donors Seriously (TDS) Manual . Each Area has a copy of this manual and should work to implement a TDS plan for your local  program. However, we include some of the highlights in this manual.

To be effective in raising funds, it is important to consider a wide variety of activities available to you in a total fundraising mix. Many Areas find they are good at events, but rarely consider grant submissions, local newsletters or personal donor visits. Others might find it easy to approach churches for church partnerships and may even try their hand at a local appeal, but they lack events that attract potential new donors and they rarely contact the donors they do have.

Local Events (ideally, two per year) – this might include an event you host and then perhaps the sale of Krispy Kremes or other at a local event or festival.

Grant submissions – local, State or National (we will provide training and a toolkit to help you in this Area).

Church partnership opportunities – consider hosting lunches for pastors or inviting some pastors along to summer camp!

Local newsletters – Whilst the national office will send out four national newsletters a year on behalf of all Areas, you may consider sending one or two newsletters with a local focus. Include a give slip and a response envelope.

Local Appeals – The National Office also puts together and distributes four all-area appeals per year, with all money going back to the local Area it’s received from. You may also want to consider sending out a local appeal for a specific purpose. Please consult the National Office for assistance and to ensure that your mail out or electronic direct marketing does not clash with
the National Office communications calendar.

Taking Donors Seriously – keep in regular contact! Have a list of all donors and consider how you will keep in touch with them. Who needs a handwritten note just to say thanks? Who needs a phone call? Who should you visit? At the very least, we recommend an annual visit to monthly donors just to say thanks and share your local Vision Statement so they can see where you are
headed. Frequency will vary from Area to Area and depend very much on the donor, but we encourage all committees to carefully examine their current donor list and discuss, as a group, a plan for making personal contact with all donors over the course of the year.

We would like to challenge all Areas to implement a healthy balance of the fundraising mix in their Financial Master Plan. We have provided a template in the TDS Manual that allows you to consider how each of these activities might fit into your annual plan.

Like the Vision Statement, the National Office will work with each Area to develop a Financial Master Plan that challenges you to incorporate every aspect of the fundraising mix. This will possibly be a challenge for some Areas, but we believe it will have a dramatic impact on your fundraising for the year.

A member of the National or Regional Staff will also visit your Area at least three times a year to monitor your progress on your activity plan and to lend assistance with any changes that should be made. They will also be happy to join you for meetings, events or presentations where you feel a National Office presence would be beneficial.

The National Office will endeavour to equip you in running a thriving committee and in achieving fundraising success. Our services include annual training summits (with outside expertise on relevant topics); tools and templates for grants and presentations; updated Young Life materials; hosting of the Adult Guest program at summer camp; templates and assistance in developing Vision Statements; budgets and Financial Master Plans; assistance and input on local events; input and editing of all local appeals, newsletters, press releases, grant submissions etc; and a national Communications and Events Calendar to help you consider your own local communication plan along with regular visits to your Area. Most importantly, we are always available to chat, brainstorm or offer advice. Just give us a call; we’d love to hear from you!

Campership Coordinator

Jim Rayburn, founder of Young Life, understood the power of camping. When kids are at camp, the Gospel can more effectively be communicated to them because they are having fun with friends and Young Life leaders and are away from the pressures of everyday life. 

Job Description

Working with the Area Manager, the campership coordinator will:

  • Keep the committee informed about the needs of the campership program.
  • Raise funds to help send more young people to camp.
  • Work with the Church Liaison Coordinator for opportunities to speak in local churches about the need for camp sponsorship in the lead up to camps.
  • Be available to assist with (and coordinate a team of volunteers to help with) the paperwork that must be done before young people go to camp.
  • Work with the prayer coordinator to develop strategies: to pray for young people to sign up for camp, to pray for the campers and leaders during the week of camp and to pray for all the campers after they return home.
  • Work with the leader/staff care coordinator to ensure care packages are given to leaders prior to boarding the bus for camp.
  • Ensure that donors are thanked for camp sponsorships in liaison with the donor care specialist.

Basic Strategies to Develop

  • Create a subcommittee to assist with raising funds and other support activities.


  • Understands the huge impact a camp experience can have on a young person’s life.
  • Enjoys fundraising.
  • Is an encourager.
  • Has good organizational skills.
  • Possesses the gift of helping.

Time Requirement: 8-12 hours per month during the sign-up and camping season

Communications Coordinator

The members of the local community should be aware of and informed about the ministry of Young Life. By utilizing the local media, Young Life’s mission can be more fully communicated to the general public. Hopefully, by having a clear understanding of the ministry and its activities, Young Life will be more positively received by the local community.

Job Description

The coordinator will work closely with the area director to ensure that all significant Young Life activities and events are publicized in a timely manner. The coordinator will:

  • Ensure that events are publicized in area newspapers, print and radio (as appropriate).
  • Ensure that the Young Life area is represented at community events.
  • Ensure that activities (eg. clubs, new programs) are publicized.
  • Work with the Prayer Coordinator to maintain secular database on Mail Chimp and communicate regularly with them.
  • Liaison with Young Life Australia’s Communications Department as required.


  • Experienced in journalism.
  • Has good verbal and written skills.
  • Is creative.
  • Has good organizational skills.
  • Able to set priorities and timetables.

Time Requirement: 2 hours per month

Taking Donors Seriously (TDS) Chair

Without a doubt the secret to a successful Taking Donors Seriously (TDS) team is an effective TDS chairperson.  They are the driving force of the team’s ability to identify and build a relationship with the area’s top-tier donors. In addition, the TDS chair leads the development of the TDS strategy for the area. The TDS chair and the committee chair need to work together closely to coordinate support for the ministry.

Job Description

The TDS chair will:

  • Recruit a TDS team.
  • Arrange a local training session for the TDS team.
  • Work with the area director and the TDS team to establish the seven non-negotiables of TDS: financial prayer strategy, case statement, leadership team, Field Development Tool (PPL and Cash Flow) strategy and plan.
  • Attend annual regional TDS training sessions.
  • Work with the area director to recruit and select the next TDS chair.
  • Take the online TDS Course.

Basic Strategies to Develop

  • Organize and hold the TDS team accountable to complete all calls to prospective top-tier donors and current top-tier donors.
  • Ensure that the committee chair and the committee solicit funds from all other donors who pledge giving at an event.
  • Develop a system to manage and update the area’s Field Development Tool (PPL and Cash Flow).
  • Develop a process to manage and update the area strategy and plan.


  • Has the gift of leadership.
  • Is honest and trustworthy.
  • Is organized.
  • Is talented with finances, budgeting and/or accounting.
  • Can delegate and hold people accountable.

Time Requirement: 8 hours per month

NOTE: Different areas will have different time requirements, and this should be used as a guide only.  Different times of year as well will have different time pressures.

Go to TDS Course

So What Makes a Great Team?

“Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all others. We have different gifts according to the grace given us.”

Romans 12:4-6

A key element of a ‘team’ is that each member recognises his or her unique value and importance to the overall team. Paul uses the illustration of the body more than 30 times in his letters, and this analogy for the church can be applied to teams as well. Each person has a role to play according to the gifts they have been given. Not one gift is more important than the other, but instead, all gifts work together so the overall body (team) functions effectively. And importantly, the gifts committee members bring complement the abilities found on staff, in volunteer leaders and donors, bringing balance to the larger Young Life team.

Taking this basic principle from Paul, we have organised this book into sections that illustrate what makes a great team, each giving practical suggestions on how to be an effective committee.

Great Teams . . .

  1. Have a common purpose
  2. Have a clear vision, goals and action plan
  3. Have a structure with solid leadership
  4. Recruit and motivate the right people
  5. Use their time together effectively
  6. Appreciate and Celebrate
  7. Evaluate performance
  8. Have fun together!

To see more about each of these elements, go to the Committee Manual Course.

See why Susan & Jenna serve on their local Young Life committees.

Church Liaison Coordinator

Many areas are looking for additional ways to involve non-committee adults, and to develop stronger support from local church congregations. This role helps bring those two things together in a way that, when done effectively, can truly bless an area.

Job Description

The coordinator develops a network of friends of Young Life who are willing to go to their church once or twice a year with a request on behalf of Young Life.

Basic Strategies to Develop

  • Find out what churches are represented among the Young Life community. Places to look:
    • Committee members
    • Volunteer leaders
    • Staff members
    • The church-going parents of young people who Young Life has significantly impacted
  • Recruit these friends to undertake one or two annual tasks.
    • Request a meeting with the pastor or missions committee for the staff/committee representative to attend.
    • Request a Young Life announcement or presence at a missions Sunday or similar event.
  • Equip the team to make their asks.
  • Connect the staff (or trained volunteer/committee rep) with churches when a door opens.
  • Record what progress we make with each church annually.
  • Write yearly to churches to update them of Young Life work in their community, and to thank them for their support.


  • Can organize.
  • Communicates well with a group of people.
  • Is actively involved in their own church.

Time Requirement: 2 – 4 hours per month