Project Serve Highlight 18 from Youth For Christ USA on Vimeo.

A Note from our Director of Project Serve at YFC Camp, Deb Smith...

2018 Fun Stats 

  • Served a total of 3097 Campers, Leaders and LST 
  • Had 414 Team members at 11 Camps 
  • Cumulative PS Volunteer hours for 11 camps = 27,850 hours/ translated to$$$= $333,840 (NY minimum wage/$12) 
  • Served 151 meals = 428,085 + dishes 


When I think about the Project Serve experience, the word empowerment comes to mind.  Webster’s definition of empowerment: the state of being empowered to do something: the power, right, or authority to do something.

When a person signs up to serve on a PS team, in essence, they are given the authority “to do something”.  In this case, they are given the opportunity to serve campers/ leaders at a specific week of camp.

I would be the first to say, that not all PS participants have a full understanding of what it is they signed up “to do”.  Some said yes to the experience as an invitation from a friend or CL Leader, others may feel like it is a chance to “give back”, and there are those who said yes to the experience because they truly want to serve others.  

Whatever the scenario of one’s arrival on a PS team, once they are at camp, willingly or unwillingly, they become empowered to serve. Whether it is in a behind the scenes role (Kitchen, Dish Pit, House Keeping), or in a more visible role (DH Servers, Adventure Crew, Program Team, Life Guards) you have a task to accomplish. Just looking at the above Fun Facts, the work accomplished, happened because of a team of empowered people.

Having completed year three in my role as PS Director I have had the opportunity to serve on several PS teams. I have observed different types of people serving.  All of them “empowered” to serve, but some of them submitting to the emPOWERment of the living and active spirit of God.  John 15:5 states, “apart from me you can do nothing”.

We can all be empowered “to do” something, but sometimes when that “something” requires selfless action, taking on the form of a servant, our souls and character can be challenged.  Called out, and called up to something higher, something we can in no way accomplish in our own strength.

Over the last three years, I have witnessed many people submit their personal agendas, pride, and leadership experience. Submission makes way for spirit led boldness, divine dependency, and true servant leadership is on display.

Jesus, our greatest example of a servant, though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Rather, he gave up his divine privileges and took the humble position of servant/ slave. He became one of us, and showed us the “better” way, not necessarily the easier way. When there is less of us, and more room for Him, true emPOWERment occurs!

My prayer for all of those who take part in Project Serve at YFC Camp is that every person would have a life-changing encounter with Jesus through an intentional, emPOWERed servant leadership experience. Take a moment to think how that kind of leadership can influence the world!

Deb Smith
Director of Project Serve At YFC Camp