Volunteer Certification Requirements
YPM requires all volunteers working directly with inmates or returning citizens to be certified. This assures, not only the quality and the safety of the volunteer, but also the effectiveness of the ministry.
Certification is good for two years. Volunteers may receive their certification at annual trainings offered by their Area Council, neighboring Area Councils, or at the YPM Annual Conference (for new volunteers only). Schedules of certification/trainings are posted on the website and included in volunteer publications.
Certification is not intended to be a burden, but a bi-annual stepping stone to continued growth and effectiveness in ministry. These events are structured to help volunteers develop ministry knowledge, skills, and awareness. During the training, basic ministry information and topics relevant to all areas of prison ministry, as well as ministry trends, will be presented. Volunteers also have the opportunity to meet and “fellowship” with other volunteers and share their experiences.
Though only required bi-annually, volunteers are encouraged to attend as often as possible for continued ministry and spiritual growth. Prison ministry is a dynamic ministry – always changing. Only the Word of God remains unchanged. Just as we come to a deeper understanding of scripture with each new meditation, we come to a deeper understanding of the ministry God has called us to when we are diligent to attend periodic training events.
Instruct a wise man and he will be wiser still;
teach a righteous man and he will add to his learning.
—Proverbs 9:9 NIV