Creating and supporting up to 25 young internships each year is central to the Baptist Union of Scotland’s Next Generation programme, which equips and supports young Baptists to succeed as future leaders, both inside the church and more widely.
In 2018, Baptist Insurance awarded a grant to the Union to fund an additional two places in its young internship programme through 2019, since the quality of applications was so high.
Developing whole life disciples to lead in the wider world
Reverend Ali Laing, Next Generation Coordinator at the Baptist Union of Scotland, said: “The importance of our churches investing so significantly in young people is that we really need and want to have whole-life disciples out in the world. We’re grateful to Baptist Insurance for enabling us to take on two additional interns, David Spencer (19) and Alpha Arakaza (22) in 2019.”
The full-time interns are based at either the Baptist Union of Scotland offices or in Baptist churches who participate in the programme. Training includes working as an integral member of the office environment, residentials and peer support with other interns, and being part of the training hub, with specific training on subjects such as discipleship, interpersonal skills, leadership, mission, pioneering, outreach and leading with Christian values for life.
The Baptist family receives immeasurable value from the contribution of our intern programme
The process is tailored around each cohort’s skills, strengths and inherent qualities. The focus for a year may be on, for example, communication, event management, or social justice. Throughout, interns contribute to next generational policy and strategy, deliver youth-focused programmes, support church activities, lead gatherings and events and serve as active members on the Baptist Union of Scotland Council.
From a council perspective, the inclusion of young adults has not just provided new energy, commitment and ideas. Older council members have appreciated how much they learn about younger ideas and points of view. The interns are respected and have an equal voice; and are mentored while their valuable input is taken seriously and allowed to impact decision making.
We are privileged to share the journey
“The internship programme is like a gap year. It’s a chance for young adults to learn about who they are and how they can be of service to the world,” Rev’d Laing continued: “I’m delighted that the two interns funded by Baptist Insurance have gained so much from their experience in the programme. Both are now in full-time employment, in the banking sector, and are sharing their strengthened Christian values with the wider world. Their future looks very bright.”