Youth Exchange Program (YEP) is an international youth program, administered by BCC. The program normally extends over one year, and involves training and education in the Norwegian language, Norwegian culture, and Bible knowledge.
YEP is for citizens of countries outside of Europe and the EEA. It allows young people from several parts of the world to work through an exchange program as part of BCC’s church operations and non-profit projects in Norway. At the same time, the program is an important part of BCC’s missionary work, creating good relationships amongst fellow believers from different parts of the world, and increasing knowledge and understanding of the gospel in a multicultural setting.
Read more about the main content of the program:
Education in BCC’s foundation of faith, missionary work and church life
YEP participates in Bible studies and becomes part of an Christian community with young people of many different cultures. Central themes in the program are:
Focus on my chances to be able to show an interest, to help and to care
Focus on my chances of triggering the potential in the people with whom i have to do
The importance of being an independent and reflective person in the context of a larger community
The importance of making independent choices which can make a difference in my surroundings
The chance to be able to build community across background, culture, and personality
The most effective training however takes place through participating in the practical mission and church work. YEP participates in the following activities throughout the two seasons that the program spans:
TV production and film production in BrunstadTV
Communication on web and social media
Translation of articles from Norwegian to mother tongue
Planning and implementing large international conferences
Planning of the implementation of smaller events with specific themes
Visits to different Norwegian local churches
Practical implementation of social work in both small and large arenas
Instruction in Norwegian Language and Culture
A part of YEP’s purpose is precisely that of learning the Norwegian language and culture. The participants are involved in a Norwegian course in several phases, both through group lessons and on the Internet, prior to them completing the exam and receiving a course certificate. In addition, YEP motivates the participants to use their free-time to continue their study of Norwegian via competitions, Norwegian cultural events and discussions.
The participants take active part in Norwegian National holidays. Constitution Day, Sankthans (the longest day, 23rd June) and Christmas are celebrated according to Norwegian Traditions. Moreover, activity days are arranged together with local churches around Norway, where everything takes place in Norwegian.
Respect and tolerance in a multi-cultural environment
BCC has a tradition of stimulating national uniqueness in churches from abroad. In YEP it is a central theme to get to know, understand and respect each other’s cultures. This manifests itself at such times as the church’s biannual mission feasts that are arranged by local churches throughout the whole world.
With 30 nations represented, YEP is a topical arena for building community across cultures. Even though the participants learn Norwegian and learn about Norwegian culture, the year in YEP is an extremely international affair. The participants are therefore allowed to promote their own national uniqueness via culture feasts having a national character, wherein everybody in YEP takes part.
When young people from many cultures come together for an entire year, the participants receive an international network which is of use to them later on in life. By participating in BCC´s international conferences at Brunstad, their network is further enlarged.
Efforts in the church’s conferences and projects
YEP takes part in BCC’s planning and implementation of the international conferences. Participants are given education in the areas of health, environment and safety. Moreover, training is given in customer service, communication, the workplace, work ethics and attitudes.