SAY YES TO KIDS! SUNDAY 2024
Save Sunday June 2 for Say Yes! to Kids Sunday
Thursday, January 25, 2024. Say Yes! to Kids (SYTK) is an annual fundraising appeal sponsored by the Anglican Foundation of Canada (AFC). Launched in 2021, to fund church-led programs and initiatives that support children, youth, and young adults, the Say Yes! to Kids movement has provided more than $625,000 in funding to 125 beneficiaries and fundraising partners for youth-focused ministry and outreach across the Anglican Church of Canada. Programs and initiatives have included faith formation, better learning outcomes, diverse enrichment opportunities, improved health and well-being, and restored community connections.
“Say Yes! to Kids is a hopeful and ambitious program that aligns with AFC’s vision to increase community connectedness and fund transformational ministry across Canada,” says Dr. Scott Brubacher, Executive Director. “On an almost weekly basis, AFC receives another impact story of how SYTK initiatives have revitalized ministry and created new opportunities to engage youth and young adults with mentors, their peers, and the church.”
While SYTK was prompted by the pandemic, Brubacher says that the challenges facing young people are no less urgent today. “There is an increasing body of evidence that points to loneliness and isolation as epidemics arising from the pandemic and that younger Canadians are among the hardest-hit demographics,” says Brubacher. “As a church, we can choose to receive that bad news by responding with good news: claiming our place at the table and answering the call to champion community-based solutions to this epidemic.” According to data collected by AFC since 2021, virtually every SYTK program has helped to create a more youth-centred climate in its church or diocese, thereby breaking the cycle of loneliness impacting youth and young adults in their community.
The 2024 SYTK campaign will launch on Tuesday, April 2 and close on Sunday, June 30. A new campaign component will be a liturgical resource to promote the celebration of Say Yes! to Kids Sunday on June 2. “This will provide a spiritual focal point for the SYTK movement,” says Brubacher, “and will be a flexible, adaptable resource that any church can use, whether it has an active campaign or not.”
The hope is that Anglican parishes across Canada will join forces on that Sunday, or another Sunday in the season of Pentecost. Brubacher explains that the resource is intended to be used by all churches, whether they have young people in the congregation or not. “If you don’t have youth to involve as readers, greeters, or elsewhere, the service can be a time of prayer for children and youth in your community and across the country. What matters most is rallying Canadian Anglicans to celebrate children, youth, and young adults in our midst and praying for the creativity and compassion to make young people a vital part of the fabric of our church now and in the future.”
As with the 2022 and 2023 SYTK campaigns, AFC will continue to support parishes who wish to take part in the online, team-based fundraising component, but that is not a requirement to use the SYTK liturgical resource. “Parishes can use the Sunday’s offertory to support their SYTK fundraising campaign, if they are participating as a fundraising partner,” explains Brubacher, “or they can simply use it for their own purposes—to support local or diocesan outreach to children, youth, and young adults. Or parishes may wish to use the offering to make a gift to AFC’s Kids Helping Kids Fund to support ongoing grants for youth-focused programs and initiatives.”
All Canadian Anglicans are invited to be part of the SYTK movement by:
- Pre-registering a 2024 fundraising team
- Learning more about SYTK Sunday
- Reading stories about SYTK ministries in action
- Downloading the FAQs Sheet
- Donating to SYTK
For more information about the 2024 Say Yes! to Kids campaign, download the media backgrounder or contact Michelle Hauser, AFC’s Development & Communications officer.