Hello there (or more like ‘ey-up, how’s thee doin’).
My name is Oli Deeks and I’m the new Centre Director for Camberley Youth for Christ.
I’m very pleased you are reading my very first blog post. What an honour this is for you (just kidding!).
I thought I would blog how my time with Camberley Youth for Christ (CYFC) has been so far.
First, let me get you up-to-speed of who I am and who CYFC are.
I started as Centre Director for CYFC on 19th Feb 2018, so as I’m writing this blog I’ve been leading CYFC for 36 days and counting, so I’m relatively new to the job. Before I started working for CYFC I used to be the full time youth worker at St John’s, Windlesham where I spent 5 and half years. As part of my youth work at St John’s I used to regularly volunteer for CYFC and later became a trustee, so I can safely say I knew what I was letting myself in for.
A little more about me.
I’m newly married to my beautiful wife Becca (picture below of our wedding day). I’m a proud Northerner from Sheffield, hence the northern phrase at the start. I have an identical twin brother, Josh Deeks, who funnily enough works for Quinton Youth for Christ and his wife is also called Becky, who’s from the same area as my wife (that’s twins for you). I love sport especially football and any sport with a racket (not the noise). I’m a Sports Ministry Adviser for the Guildford Diocese. I support Sheffield Wednesday FC and I love to watch gripping/funny/action-packed TV series & films on Netflix. I also play on my Xbox now and again.
That’s enough about me.
For those of you who don’t know who Camberley Youth for Christ are, we’re 1 of 70 local centres for national Youth for Christ, whose current mission (this will be changing soon as we relaunch our vision) is…
to bring the good news relevantly to young people in and around Camberley.
We do this by working in local Secondary schools providing a plethora of school work provision such as: RS lessons, assemblies, detached youth work, Christian Unions, lunch clubs and student pastoral support. We also partner with local Churches and recently the Surrey County Council.
That’s us in a nut shell, that’s what we do and what I’m currently leading and trying to develop.
It’s been great to continue the hard work and legacy that Rachel Bevan (previous centre director, I do miss her!) left. I certainly hit the ground running, with so much work to sink my teeth into. At first I found it all rather overwhelming with lots of new inputs to deal with and not knowing how it all works. I guess that’s the same for anyone who starts a new job. But I can safely say that God has had it all in hand. He’s been such a rock and someone I can and have depended on. I feel much more relaxed and settling into the new role. I’m comforted by the wise words in Proverbs 3: 5-6
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
My time with Camberley Youth for Christ
As of yet, my time has been in copious meetings. It’s been fantastic meeting lots of people who connect and volunteer with Camberley Youth for Christ. From RS teachers & head teachers, bursars, receptionists, student support officers and SENCO’s. To Church leaders, youth workers and our wonderful volunteers. It’s been very busy indeed. I had the privilege to introduce myself and share the work of CYFC at two local Church forums, ‘GU16 Churches together‘ & ‘Camberley Churches Together‘. I’ve also met with other Youth for Christ Centre Directors, hearing about the youth work they do in their local area. We recently had a new Youth for Christ centre open in Farnborough, which is exciting and could lead to future joint work. It’s encouraging to know that at CYFC we’re part of the Youth for Christ family and believe me it feels like a supportive and loving family.
I’ve also been doing lots of hands on youth work. I’ve stepped into running two Christian Unions, one lunch club, two lunch time detached youth work and meeting with five young people for pastoral support. Over the last couple of weeks I’ve led Easter assemblies at Collingwood College, sharing the good news in a relevant and meaningful way to young people. Yes it involved chocolate and games. Below is a picture of me taking year 8’s assembly.
Lots of youth work for me, which is great and something I love doing.
Finally, my time has been planning for future events. I have two key events which might be of interest to you.
- Youth Weekend Away | 15th – 17th June 2018 | at Runways end outdoor centre.
An action packed evangelistic weekend geared up to help young people in school years 6 – 9, explore faith and encounter God all whilst having the most fun imaginable and building relationships with each other and our leaders. Think action-packed roadshows and interest-centred workshops. Think outdoor activities and one-of-a-kind late nights, after-hours fun. Think making memories. If you can imagine all this then you have our Youth Weekend away! You can find out more here.
2. a Vision reLaunch of Camberley Youth for Christ (with AGM) | 23rd June 2018, 7.30pm | at St Pauls Camberley.
We’re setting sail for a new Camberley Youth for Christ chapter with a new mission statement and logo. It’s all change as we look to develop our work to be young people focused, in look and feel. It’s all very exciting and we can’t wait to show you the brand new look of Camberley Youth for Christ. During the event there will be refreshments, youth led worship & prayers and a VISION presentation from yours truly. If you want to come you will need to book tickets.
I’m also planning to partner with local youth groups to take young people to Soul Survivor in the Summer. Watch this space for more details.
Thank you soo much for reading this Blog. If you would like to keep up-to-date with everything I get up to at Camberley Youth for Christ, you should definitely follow our Facebook and Instagram accounts. I often post daily on both platforms.
Oli Deeks (Centre Director)