In this episode, I talk with Youth Pastor, Steve Cullum, about how to come alongside students in your ministry who are struggling with their mental health. He walks through what it looks like to partner with organizations in your community to equip youth, parents, and leaders to champion students as they walk through mental health struggles. We also have a conversation about Steve’s role in two very different sized churches, in two different parts of the country, what was similar and what was different in those two churches, and what that transition looked like.
Links Mentioned in This Episode
Student Ministry Podcast – Check out Steve’s podcast on all things youth ministry
Download Youth Ministry – A great resource for content and training videos to use with your leaders and parents
TrainedUp.Church – An online training platform for churches
Serving Families of Students Struggling with Mental Health
- Raise awareness
- Put resources in their hands, including a contact sheet
- Partner with local mental health organizations to host workshops
- Build out a crisis protocol
- Invite parents and students to trainings, along with leaders
3 Things To Do When a Student is in Harm’s Way or Experiences Harm/Tragedy:
- Take them to a safe, public place (if possible with another leader present)
- Listen and ask clarifying questions (don’t promise to keep secrets you can’t keep)
- Connect with the youth pastor or another pastor on staff right away
- Talk to some professionals in your community about mental health
- Organize a training with students, parents, and leaders at your church
- Block out time in your schedule to meet with your key leaders monthly
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