YES trips are filled with intentional activities; we fill the time with so many things that make the weekend trip feel like it lasts a week.

One of the things we commonly do is to go to a grocery store or a mall and split into small groups. Each group gets a small amount of money to bless someone else in the store.

Some groups pay for the person behind them in line. Other groups start conversations with people and give money to them directly to meet a particular need. The activity is very open to creativity, and it is fun to figure out how to make someone’s day!

Also, we hand out inspirational note cards to those we encounter, simply to brighten their day. Many people respond differently to this, because they are not used to being given something without being asked for something in return.

Often, our YES activities allow us to experience the reality of serving. This reality is that not everyone will accept the gift you offer. We are able to process what we might experience following Christ to the Cross.

This activity is special because our sole purpose for going to the store is not to shop for ourselves, but to give to other people. This shows how we can serve wherever we are. Service does not only have to be on a weekend trip, or in a certain setting. We can practice it at any time!

Youth Equipped to Serve is a program of FOCUS North America that creates opportunities for youth to engage with the poverty of their city, equipping young people to become servant leaders in their own communities. Learn more on the YES program website:

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