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Young Life annual banquet raises funds for ministry
Young Life pic
Young Life kids formed a cheering and clapping tunnel for banquet attendees to the Sept. 30 event at the Lakeview Center. - photo by David Renner Dawson Community News

Dinner with a smile was served to everyone at the Lakeview Center on Sept. 30 when Young Life of Dawson County held its annual fundraising reception and banquet.

The Young Life ministry uses the banquet as a fundraiser as well as an opportunity for the community to hear about how Young Life is reaching Dawson County's youth.

The funds help the ministry support on-campus clubs and camps, train leaders and other events.

"Young Life's mission is to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ and help them grow in their faith," said Shawn Dutcher, area director.

The ministry works with high school and middle school students, with Young Life being the high school ministry and WyldLife being the middle school ministry.

Young Life began in Dawson County in 2003, with WyldLife starting locally in 2008. Since its inception, the ministry has seen more than 600 kids involved in some way, according to officials.

Both Young Life and WyldLife minister to more than 75 students combined each month.

"The ministry is made up of volunteer leaders who show up and build relationships with kids," Dutcher said. "We build trust and earn the right to be heard."

Dutcher says Young Life does this through contact work, showing up where kids gather. They also have weekly clubs that are "full of fun music, humor, and a short message."

Dutcher says the ministry needs people to donate to Young Life in order to keep it running.

"We raise all our funds locally, and this ministry thrives only by the support of the community," he said.

For more information about Young Life or WyldLife, call (706) 265-6510.