Equipping youth workers for mission in disadvantaged communities.

14 million people (1 in 5) are living in poverty in the UK. That means children and their families are stuck in a cycle of multiple deprivation, impacting their quality of life and future opportunities.

Although the stats are overwhelming, around the country Christians are moving into areas of deprivation to share their lives, build friendships and offer the hope of Jesus to those in need. Thrive Youth Ministry Training equips these workers for long term, sustainable mission.

This isn’t a gap year- this is a year for youth workers to refine their practice, develop character and skills and devise an individual strategy for long term mission in their community.


Dates: 10th September 2018 -26th June 2019

Training Days: Mondays and Tuesdays (fortnightly)

Costs: £1250 with free accommodation provided

Placements: Alongside a local church, you can be placed with a Thrive team in Oxford, in another nearby disadvantaged area, or come with your own placement.

Experience: You will need at least the equivalent of 1 year (paid or voluntary) experience working with youth or disadvantaged communities.



Erica PayneErica Payne Erica Payne spent 8 years as the Youth Worker at St John the Baptist Church and since 2015 has lived in the Barton estate, leading a Thrive team to release the God-given potential of its young people. In 2018, she became Programme Leader for the new Thrive Youth Ministry Training programme.

Erica says, ‘I think young people have a lot of potential but they are not always aware of it or do not have the opportunities and support to reach their potential. Young people should know their value and worth so we seek to build self-esteem and confidence. I believe Barton can continue to change for good and young people are how it is going to change!’

Erica is married to Sam and they have a lovely daughter, Isabelle (Ibby). She enjoys making gifts, upcycling furniture and generally making things look pretty!

What others are saying about Thrive

“All Thrive staff who work in Barton also live in Barton so this gives a real sense of embracing the young people they work with, some of whom will be those most socially excluded from everything else that takes place locally. Their Young Leaders, Mentoring and Outreach projects have seen some amazing results and they have succeeded where others before them have failed.”

Sue Holden, Company Secretary, Barton Community Association