In the last newsletter I wrote about the changing shape of the UK community, the upsurge in the number of online groups and the various types of meetings that are now taking place. These changes are directly related to the pandemic, but there’s one thing that’s changing that’s not -we’re all getting older! As someone recently commented at a meeting, she was the youngest person when she joined the group 20 years ago and still is.
In these uncertain times introducing young adults to the gift of meditation has never been more important. This has been acknowledged internationally with Tayna Malaspina being appointed as Young Adult Coordinator. Recently Tayna has been very active in encouraging people to attend the retreat for young adults held in person at Bonnevaux (and online) at the end of July.
And of course it would be great to have the energy of young adults to help nurture the balance between contemplation and action that our community needs. As a community we offer a space where we can come together and have an influence on some of the big issues of our time and young adults have shown the drive and determination they can bring to this, especially environmental issues.
As part of the activities at the last National Council participants were asked to come up with ideas as to how we could make contact with the 20 to 40 year age group . A lot of suggestions were made and this was added to at our June coordinators meeting. You can read the list below. While none of us can follow up everything I would encourage you all to have a look at the list and see if there is anything you can do.
The first suggestion on the list is to offer a monthly young meditators group in the UK, so if you are reading this and thinking it is something that might appeal to you, or maybe to someone you know, please do get in touch.
In the UK we have special interest coordinators engaged in various outreach work but as yet no-one representing young adults, so if there is anyone who feels they could make a difference and would like to know more about the role of a special interest coordinator again, please do get in touch.
I look forward to hearing from you.
National Coordinator WCCM in the UK
Suggestions made at the National Council 2021 & June Coordinators meeting
- Monthly young meditators group
- Gather existing young meditators and ask them
- Special Interest Coordinator for young adults
- Through further education colleges and universities
- Channel back from Bonnevaux to UK community.
- Put ads in university libraries/chapels
- Offer meditation sessions in university libraries/chapels
- Invite our children and grandchildren
- Introductory course for young adults
- Invite young adults from online groups onto our database
- Through social media
- Youth church
- Meet where they are i.e. meditation and drink in the bar
- Find out what attracted our young meditators
- Offer family meditation experiences
- Encourage young oblates to share the gift and learn from them
- Avoid Christian language
- Have targeted events for young adults
- Online tasters for young adults
- Contact university chaplaincies
- Use an app like Meetups
- Offer evening meetings in secular settings
- Through bodywork classes (yoga, chi gung, tai chi etc)
- Through environmental/social justice/marginalised networks.
- Tie in with teaching meditation with children