Junior Youth Spiritual Empowerment Program
Empowering Young People
Between the ages of 12 and 15—which Bahá’ís call “junior youth” – is a critical time, when young people move from childhood to adolescence and then adulthood. Young people at this age have lots of potential, but they are also very vulnerable to the negative influences of materialism, fear and prejudice.
In response to this, Bahá’í community developed the Junior Youth Spiritual Empowerment Program; a program that helps junior youth to effectively develop their potential and use their energies for the benefit of the world around them.
An “animator”—often a youth some years older than the group of junior youth—guides the group through a program that encourages them to think critically and to see themselves as agents of change in their communities. Through study, they learn to identify the influences that surround them while developing their spiritual strengths. Through acts of service—which can be anything from cleaning litter in their neighborhood to organizing classes, games or other activities for younger children—junior youth become empowered to make decisions that benefit them and the community around them, not only materially, but also spiritually.