Uniteen groups meet each Sunday in Unity centers to explore spiritual truths. They provide a safe place for youth in their preteen years (middle school) to connect with others and explore what they believe. Most groups also meet for social outings to socialize and develop healthy relationships. Some regions offer weekend retreats for Uniteens called “Unitreats.”
To build a Uniteen program, consider people, purpose and principles:
1. (Who) Decide if there is a need for a Uniteen program and if so, are the parents or center willing to support it? What age or grade parameters will the group adhere to?
2. (Mission) Identify the program’s purpose. What is the reason the group exists?
3. (Principle) Explore philosophical underpinnings by examining beliefs about:
- The Uniteens
- The Uniteen leader’s role
- How to facilitate
- Unity principles
What is YOU?
The Youth of Unity (YOU) is an international youth group and active teen ministry for high school students, ages 14–18 (grades 9–12). Teens gather at a Unity center, usually on Sunday, to explore and discover spiritual truths and learn how these truths relate to their lives. Most chapters meet at other times to do service in their ministry and community, have a social event, or attend regional and/or international events. Officers, or a leadership team, are often elected to help plan for the local group.
The purpose of YOU is to encourage and assist in the spiritual growth of all young people who are seeking to express their indwelling spiritual potential in accordance with the principles of practical spirituality as taught and interpreted by Unity: World Headquarters at Unity Village and Unity Worldwide Ministries. YOU provides youth the opportunity to explore Unity principles and other truth teachings and to demonstrate these in their daily lives. Visit IYOU on Facebook. Learn more about the Youth of Unity program.
How do I get involved?
Chapter Eligibility Requirements
Any Unity center or study group affiliated with Unity Worldwide Ministries may facilitate an active YOU chapter. In order to be considered an active YOU chapter, the group must:
- Be under the direction of a recognized Unity member ministry of Unity Worldwide Ministries.
- Be active in their regional YOU.
- Include one or more teens ranging from the ages of 14 through 18 years of age (YOUer) and at least one adult sponsor (YOU Sponsor).
*The above chapter eligibility requirements replace the previous program of chartering through the International Teen Ministry Coordinator at Unity Worldwide Ministries.
Uniteen Leadership and YOU Sponsor Roles and Responsibilities
Uniteen leaders and YOU sponsors come in all shapes, styles, backgrounds and personalities. The one constant is a sincere spiritual commitment to living and practicing Truth principles and a loving desire to serve our youth by engaging them in the learning process.
The success of any preteen or teen group begins with its leadership team. Benefits of working in a team include:
- Having a range of ideas, personalities and teaching styles
- Greater personal attention for students
- Sharing of responsibilities
- Mutual support
- Sounding boards
- Sacred safety
Members of the team serve in a variety of spiritual roles that assist in empowering preteens and teens to discover their inner Divine self. Leaders wear an assortment of hats, depending on the center’s programs, which can include facilitator, teacher, guide, role model, coordinator, communicator, administrator, youth advocate, liaison, mentor, coach and travel chaperone. Each leader serves as an accepting, non-judgmental, caring adult who listens and supports without trying to solve the teen’s problems.
Uniteen Leader and YOU Sponsor Support System
- Youth Director, who is your biggest advocate
- Regional Education Consultants including International Teen Ministry Coordinator
- Peers—network with other Unity centers and youth volunteers
- Local, regional and national training workshops, retreats and teachers’ meetings
- Your personal relationship with God
Teen Ministry Manual (#1340-DL)