HERMISTON
Youth programs begin at Hermiston church

Youths participate in Tribe at the Hermiston Assembly of God Church. A kickoff event for youth programs, from ages 3 through high school, is Wednesday at 6:30 p.m.

With school back in session the Hermiston Assembly of God Church is gearing up for its youth group programs.

Open to all youths, the program kicks off Wednesday with Round-Up Night for the Hermiston Girls Club and Royal Rangers. Boys and girls ages 3 through fifth grade are encouraged to wear their best cowboy duds. The event features prizes, games and food.

In addition, Tribe starts that evening with a barbecue. Open to middle and high school youths, the program focuses on mentoring youths.

“We try to focus on practical things,” said Roger Brown, Tribe coordinator. “They are all Bible-based principles. We believe if you are following Christ, it should affect all areas of your life.”

Brown, who has worked with the program for the past 18 months, grew up in Hermiston and participated in a similar program at the Hermiston church. He has volunteered with similar programs across the United States and resumed helping in the same church he grew up in when he returned to the area a handful of years ago.

The older youths, Brown said, will work on team-building throughout the month of September, as well as developing a community project.

Hermiston Girls Club coordinator Sheri Haight and Royal Rangers coordinator Dave Cooper said programs are divided by age groups. With a strong faith-based component, youths can earn merits and badges similar to Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.

“The focus is Bible-based character development,” Haight said. “There are Bible stories woven in with everything we do.”

“Overall, we teach good morals, good character and skills,” Cooper added.

Among the practical skills are babysitting and janitorial work. Cooper said the youths will assist in upkeep of the church building.

In addition, there are fun activities, including sleepovers and camping, as well as models and design, where the boys make cars to race in the Pinewood Derby.

Rev. Terry Haight said the program attracts upwards of 150 youths to the weekly program. More than half, he said, aren’t connected to a particular church.

The youth programs are Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. at the Hermiston Assembly of God Church, 730 E. Hurlburt Ave. For those who need transportation, rides can be arranged.

For more information or to schedule a ride in one of the church vans, call 541-567-5831.

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Contact Community Editor Tammy Malgesini at tmalgesini@eastoregonian.com or 541-564-4539

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