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Children's and Youth

Advent Logo RGBThe Come & See the Advent Box for 2021 offers a range of fun, creative and reflective activities for all ages organised into four weeks to cover Advent. These additional free resources, including a church guide, are available for you to download. 

  • Church guide with suggestions for how to make the most of the boxes and link with your worship and groups – download PDF (1.13 mb)
  • Stained glass window images to decorate – download PDF (305 kb)
  • Bunting kit to make at home – download PDF (93 kb)
  • Invitation card – resource coming soon!
  • Come and See circular logo – download JPG (3.3 mb) download PNG (180 kb)

Buy the Advent Box online

You can buy the full Come & See Advent Box online from the URC Shop. 

Helping to point you to great resources and ideas...




The 2009 partly improvised film starring Martin Freeman and Ashley Jensen, is an excellent film for all ages. Based around a class at St Bernadette’s Catholic school and their attempt to put on a school nativity, it covers many themes and ideas as well as helping to tell the Christmas story.

Why not have a film night with your group, or a Sunday afternoon church event? We have created some discussion cards on 5 themes found in the film to help get you and your group (whatever age they may be) thinking, talking and reflecting together. Download the discussion cards here.



Help children piece together the story of Jesus with the Children's Society Christingle. Christingle celebrations are held in churches and schools and are a great way of teaching children the story of Jesus using a Christingle orange to symbolise various elements of the story of Jesus. Children have fun making the Christingles using oranges, candles, red ribbon and sweets while also learning what each part means to Christians.

The Children’s Society works with some of the 3.6 million children living in poverty in the UK. Donations made through Christingle will go towards the charity’s work with these children and their families to help ensure a better future for them.

For more information about Christingle and how to get involved visit


Real Advent Calendar

real advent

Here in the Children’s and Youth Work department we are counting down to Christmas with The Real Advent Calendar - a new and fun way for parents, grandparents and Godparents to share the Christmas story. 

Behind each of the 25 windows there is a Fairtrade chocolate star and a few words from the Christmas story. Behind the final window there is a 24-page Christmas story booklet to read, keep and enjoy.

The Real Advent Calendar is available from Tesco stores nationwide and selected retailers. You can read more about thecalendar on their website


Alternative Advent Calendar


CS adventThe Children’s Society offers support for your personal Advent pilgrimage with this year’s Advent calendar. With its combination of film, words, audio and stories, it will make for an interesting Advent journey.


Open a window each day for a couple of minutes respite from the madness of the season. It promises to be as satisfying as a chocolate calendar with way fewer calories… unless you put a big box of chocolates by your screen!


Gingerbread Nativity


gingerbread nativityFancy a spot of baking this Christmas? Why not enter BRF’s (Bible Reading Fellowship) Gingerbread Nativity competition! 



Check out their website for more information.


Welcome to the Children's and Youth Work pages!

Following recent changes in government guidance and national restrictions in England from 5 January 2021, the National Youth Agency for youth work has moved into the RED Readiness Framework. For more information please visit the National Youth Agency website.

Church House and Synod level Children's and Youth Work staff (CYDOs and their equivalents) are working from home and doing all they can to support you during this challenging time. Please don't hesitate to contact them, preferably by email.

Nominations for the Lundie medal and award are still being welcomed! 

Photo for webpage

Children and young people are 'equal the life of the Church' (URC Charter for Children in the Church), at every level.

The United Reformed Church welcomes families, children, young people and young adults and the Children's and Youth Work team are here to help build an intergenerational church where everyone belongs, is valued and has a voice. We exist to accompany children and young people/adults on their journey with Christ. 

Why not explore our pages and see what we have to offer, whether you are a child or young person, parent or carer, volunteer or employed church worker, or just someone who wants to encourage and pray for children, young people, young adults and families. 

Our team consists of Sam (Head of Children's and Youth Work), Lorraine (Programme Officer), Steve (Pilots Coordinator), Heather (PA) and Triin (Admin assistant) and we are always only too pleased to help. If you have any further questions or need any information, please click here to contact our friendly office staff.

  • We produce a bi-monthly newsletter from the Children's and Youth Work team which you can read here or you can sign up to have it sent to you regularly by email  here.
  • At some points in the year we have a supplement to our newsletter – a training digest or book reviews etc. 


CYF Church plaque Jan 2020If you're looking for a church for your children or family to attend, or if you are a young person looking for a new church to call home, it can be difficult to know which ones will be welcoming and ready to greet you. If you spot this new plaque (or its predecessor, the Child Friendly Church Award) outside a United Reformed Church, you can be confident that this is a church which strives to consider children and young people in all they do and always to be ready, even if they don't currently have children or young people regularly involved in the church. 

If you are a church congregation wanting to continuously develop your welcome and open your doors to all ages and stages, the Children and Youth  Friendly Church Scheme is there to help!




The Children and Youth Friendly Church Scheme is an exciting opportunity to look afresh at your church’s life with children, young people and families.Guided by a trained accompanier, a local congregation can begin to explore your strengths, your values, your opportunities, your hopes and dreams.

This scheme will enable you to identify all that you currently do and how to develop your welcome to children, young people and families in a process which will encourage, reflect and celebrate with you in preference to giving you a series of hurdles to jump and boxes to tick. 

The Children and Youth Friendly Church is a programme of the United Reformed Church which recognises and encourages excellence in churches welcoming children, young people and families. Churches are supported by an accompanier and receive a certificate and plaque upon successful completion.

For more information please contact your synod children’s and youth development officer (CYDO) or lead worker, or the Assembly children’s and youth work office.

 A leaflet for churches advertising the Children and Youth Friendly Church scheme is available here or from your CYDO+ or equivalent. 

The Children and Youth Friendly Church replaces the former Child Friendly Church Award as of July 2020. 

A Children and Youth Friendly Church award means that a local congregation:

  • has a comprehensive and shared vision for Children’s and Youth Work
  • provides good opportunities for the voices of children and young people to be heard
  • takes seriously and responds to feedback from children and young people
  • provides opportunities for children and young people to be involved in planning, organising and delivering child friendly church services
  • makes suitable provision for under 5s in church
  • provides groups and organisations to help nurture children and young people
  • takes Safeguarding, Health & Safety and First Aid seriously




Gifts: Pilots Worship PackGiftsCover

Following the General Assembly 2012 resolution calling on all churches to celebrate the work of Pilots as part of all of their worship in June, the 2013 Pilots worship pack: Gifts, was sent to all churches. Here is a downloadable extract from the pack of the suggested service for Pilots Sunday. For further copies of the whole pack, which contains a wealth of resource material, contact The Pilots Desk.

Gifts extract for downloading


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