SERVE Registration is now open

Have you ever wanted to build a wild bear habitat at a wildlife park? Oh, you didn’t know that you did? Me neither!

Luckily—for bears and for CBWC youth—Hannah Juras is all over it. She’s planning this year’s SERVE (a youth-work-retreat-camp-thing that CBWC youth do every year), and building bear habitats is just one of the work projects she’s got lined up.

“One of our biggest work projects is the wildlife park in town. It’s essentially a zoo, but not,” says Hannah. “There will be students rebuilding bear habitats and working with animals who can’t be out in the wild anymore. They’ll be alongside professionals who are figuring out how to care for them in this context.”

SERVE is happening July 1-7, 2018 at Southwest Community Church in Kamloops, B.C. where Hannah is the youth pastor. (You may remember Southwest from an article a few months ago). Registration for SERVE is now open.

The wildlife park is just one work project. She’s also trying to get some students out to Cache Creek to help with restoration work needed from last summer’s devastating wildfires. In addition, there will be a bunch of projects in town.

“I’m really excited for our church. I think this is a big thing for us,” Hannah says. “We’re kind of lone rangers out here, as a CBWC church. This is a chance for, not only our youth, but for our adults to mesh with CBWC, to feel part of something bigger.”

Teams of volunteers have been working with Hannah to plan the week-long event, covering everything from where the students will sleep to what projects they’ll work on to what they’ll eat. They’re expecting anywhere from three to four hundred youth to register.

“I’m excited for this as a host. Somewhere around day three the conversation changes, you know. You’ve exhausted the small talk and caught up on Stranger Things, so deeper topics start to come up,” Hannah says. “And I’m looking forward to see how our church might latch onto this afterwards. How it will change our service mind in the years to come.”

This article was published in the February 2018 issue of Making Connections. Subscribe to the Making Connections monthly newsletter here.