We love free Youth resources! Don’t you!? It’s so great to have good quality free stuff available for ministry, especially if you’re on a tight budget. Today we’re sharing some of our favourite, free, can’t-live-without, go-to places for Youth Ministry. Some of these you probably use A LOT and others you may not have even thought of as a resource. All of these have been life-savers (not to mention major time-savers) for us at some point and we LOVE them!
Wingclips is probably the best resource for movie clips you can use for illustrations as part of your teaching at Youth. There’s a huge range of topics and hundreds of film clips, so you’ll have numerous options to choose from to find the perfect fit, and it’s a lot easier than trying to find the right place on the DVD on the night.
YouTube & Vimeo
YouTube and Vimeo are also great places to find video clips to illustrate a point, add a bit of humour to a night, or even to find new games to play! This week in our Youth we are doing our version of the Whisper Challenge which we found on the Late Show with Jimmy Fallon, via YouTube! Vimeo often has more creative video clips that are great to use for illustrations for your message. Worship music videos are also a great way to incorporate worship into your Youth night if you don’t have a band, and you can find all the current faves on YouTube, too.
Unsplash is an online library full of free stock photos which you can use under the CC0 license. So great, huh! The photos are all amazing and so diverse, so there’s always something you can use. We often pull images from Unsplash to use as part of our Youth social media and news video. (NOTE: there are lot of other websites where you can also find free stock photos but you do need to check what the license is that they are distributed under before you use them).
Note: since this post was published PicMonkey is now a paid resource. PicMonkey is an online photo editing tool which is great for quick, one-off projects. It’s fun to get creative with the different effects. The down side is you can’t save your project and come back to it later, but it is still an awesome free tool for those quick editing jobs. We use this to edit images for promotional stuff like flyers or our Youth social media.
Canva is where you can create all sorts of documents online, from social media posts to eBooks. The photo editing capabilities are more limited than that of PicMonkey, but the plus side is being able to save your work to edit later. We use Canva for designing our term planners for Youth, and occasionally worksheets for small groups.
Pinterest is an invaluable free tool! It’s my go-to for new ideas for games or activities, event decor, new wall art, discovering new blogs, and pretty much all things Youth Min. It’s also a great way to keep all your ideas in one place. Search Youth Ministry Ideas (or anything really!) to see what others are using and loving. I love this board for encouragement for those in ministry.
TIP: add the Pin button to your browser to make it even easier to save new finds on Pinterest!
Instagram is so great to see Youth Min in action! It’s great to see how a game worked out before you try it out with your own students. Many youth groups will add photos of crazy activities they do and tag them with youth related hashtags. Check out tags like #youthministry, #youthmin, #studentministry, and #ymhacks for some inspiration.
There’s nothing like bouncing ideas off other people and a great way to do that is in a Facebook group. If you have questions about how to run a particular event, how to tackle the tough topics, how to communicate well with parents, starting up a website for your Youth, networking with others in your area, what music is in right now, how to use snapchat as part of your ministry… Literally anything at all related to Youth Min, it’s the best place to ask! We are better when we do this together and Facebook groups are an awesome resource for you. Search for Youth Ministry Groups or Youth Pastor Groups on Facebook to find one to join.
Blogs are such a great free resource for Youth leaders, for all sorts of things from leadership and discipleship to the latest craze for games and events. If you’re looking for some new blogs to follow, I love Hillsong Collected for leadership, Life With C Bev for girls’ min, Sabrina Peters for love and relationships, and my American friends that write Twinistry always have amazing stuff, too! See our other favourites in The Ultimate Youth Ministry Resource Kit.
We have a library of resources as part of TYM, exclusively for our email subscribers, which you can find here. It’s free and always will be! In our library we share worksheets for small groups, printable planning workbooks, check lists and cheat sheets, and game resources we’ve made.
- Have you used any of these free resources in your ministry? How did it go?
- What are your can’t-live-without freebies for Youth Ministry? What would you add to this list?