What is the Junior Youth Spiritual Empowerment Program (JYSEP)?

One of the strongest yearnings of junior youth is to belong to a group of peers. Therefore, the program is organised around the concept of a ‘junior youth group’, the members of which meet together regularly to participate in activities that enhance their intellectual and moral capabilities and build the capacities required to help their local communities. The participants of the group strive to create a joyous, friendly atmosphere, which is free of criticism or ridicule.


The JYSEP is for those aged 11-15 years old and is a three year program. It is offered to all the local junior youth in a town or neighbourhood in which it is held. A junior youth group may consist of 10-15 members and sometimes there are multiple groups in a single locality.


The groups are facilitated by an older local youth or adult, known as an ‘animator’. All animators are trained, and for groups located in Queensland, they are Blue Card Certified. The animator is a true friend who helps the junior youth to create the desired environment within the group, and assists them as they develop the capacity to express their thoughts, recognise the various forces influencing their lives, align themselves with those that are constructive, and make positive choices.


Junior youth groups meet with their animator to carry out a range of activities including community service projects, artistic and recreational activities, and the study of materials which help them understand concepts such as hope, excellence, justice and service.
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A group typical meets weekly (for around two hours) to carry out their activities. The frequency and location of the meetings is determined by the members of the group itself.


Community Service

Groups typically organise their own community service projects which can range from local park clean-ups or, community BBQs, to more ongoing social or educational programs addressing issues affecting their communities. Every group’s interests will be different and determine the types of projects they undertake. Groups, are always supported by their animator to reflect on the needs of their own neighbourhood and undertake projects that will improve their own community.

Sports & the Arts

Many groups work hard for the betterment of their neighbourhoods and they often like to take some time to learn together through activities that complement the purpose of the group. They often do art activities, play sports, have meaningful discussions, and learn to help others in their day to day lives at home and at school.

Becoming An Animator

The role of an animator is very rewarding and is vital for the joyful and vibrant functioning of the group. An animator serves as a true friend and wise advisor. In order to become an animator, you participate in a training that helps develop capacity to work with this age group. As part of the training, all animators and volunteers serving in Queensland are required to have completed Blue Card Certification before they interact with the junior youth.