WHAT IS GENNEXT?
GenNext is our investment in the young lives of the next generation of The Gathering. We realized years ago that our annual conference had grown into a three-generation event, and we responded to the needs of our growing families by providing an outrageously fun experience while weaving in stories and activities aimed at stirring a child’s heart for faith and generosity. Our hope is two-fold: for friendships that are forged within GenNext to carry and deepen year after year of participation, and for the virtues and Scriptures that are modeled at GenNext to reinforce the lessons already taught at home.
To provide the best activities and learning environments for our children at all stages of their lives, we offer four age groups, based on where our children are in school when they arrive in September.
The GenNext schedule perfectly complements the main Gathering schedule, allowing adults to attend their selected sessions and classes while also giving families some free time together. The GenNext schedule will be released a couple of months prior to the conference. Each year we strive to produce a balanced mix of experiences that are unique, thought-provoking, and outrageously fun for the students.
In past years, students have gone kayaking and snorkeling, taken cooking classes, visited a rodeo and aquarium, and worked in teams to problem-solve their way out of “escape rooms.” They have also prepared and hosted a birthday party for children living in a homeless shelter. We take care to provide age-appropriate activities. Counselors share their personal testimonies and teach from a Bible study. Our older students will attend a few of The Gathering’s main sessions. We also invite some of our speakers to address the youth on various topics as well.
Our pool of counselors is drawn from a selective, 8-month leadership training program for young Christian adults, called The Forge. They are vetted, trained, experienced, and eager to pour into the lives of the students. The leaders of GenNext have a wonderful history with The Forge.
“My wife and I send our kids to GenNext for a number of reasons: They get discipled by cool, Godly college students, they get exposed to speakers and ideas that align with our family’s value of generosity, and they have developed great friendships with children from some really amazing families.”