Around the world, Quaker youth come together under the name of
Young Friends. For over a hundred years these groups have
offered youth in the Religious Society of Friends an opportunity
for community, education, enjoyment, and service to others.
Mission (approved 2/2002)
Following in this tradition, Southern Appalachian Young Friends
(SAYF) is an organization under the care of the Southern
Appalachian Yearly Meeting and Association (SAYMA). SAYF has
the express purpose of creating a loving, caring, joyful Quaker spiritual
community for teens in the Southeast. In doing this SAYF seeks to
foster a safe space for Young Friends to grow and explore Friends
testimonies (peace, equality, integrity, simplicity, truth, stewardship),
values, process, and spirituality. Through retreats,
conferences, service projects, business meetings, worship and other
activities, SAYF brings Young Friends together as an ongoing
Quaker ministry to teens.
Description (approved 6/2011)
Anyone in 7th grade through
high school is welcome to attend SAYF retreats. (YF may be a rising 7th
grader for SAYMA Yearly Meeting). If anyone feels that there
circumstances require consideration as a ‘special exception’ then they
are welcome to talk to a member of the SAYF Steering Committee. Teens
may attend until the Yearly Meeting immediately after they graduate
high school (or their graduation equivalent
if they are home schooled), except that no one may attend as a Young
Friend past their 19th birthday. Following graduation from SAYF, Young
Friends are encouraged to join Young Adult Friends and/or to start training to become
counselors (Friendly Adult Nurturers) for SAYF retreats.
The SAYMA Yearly Meeting for Business is ultimately responsible for the nurture and care of SAYF.
SAYF was created by recommendation of the SAYMA Ministry and Nurture Committee and approval of the
SAYMA Representatives Meeting in the winter of 1994. SAYMA supports SAYF through the SAYF Steering
Committee and the SAYF Oversight Committee.
SAYF's operation is based on Quaker tradition so that the Young Friends community is nurtured,
structured, and directed in keeping with Quaker values and Quaker process. Business is carried out
in the Young Friends Meeting for Worship with Concern for Business. The overall spiritual welfare
of the community is overseen by the Young Friends Nurturing Committee. Retreats are planned by
teen-led Planning Committees. Community Care Committees are formed when guidelines are broken by adults
or teens and determine what consequences are necessary to maintain the health of the community.
Other committees may be formed as needed.
One hope of SAYF is that this community will assist Young Friends in the Southeast to feel less
isolated and to become fuller participants in their monthly meetings as well as other wider Quaker
organizations. Another hope is that graduating Young Friends as they become young adults will
continue to support the SAYF community for future generations of teens.
SAYF seeks the Light in all people, listening for that "still small voice" that speaks to our
Last updated eighth month 2013