By Elliott Shin (Director of Programs)
Internships play a significant role in the life of Toronto City Mission. Over the past many years, our internships have challenged, and guided young people to put their calling to practice. The hope is that our interns will minister to, and help those that we serve achieve positive change, while gaining important professional and personal experience.
If an internship is simply defined as a method of on the job training that provides an opportunity to gain relevant knowledge and skills, we at TCM are privileged to offer such an opportunity in 2 different forms.
First in the summertime, we host a 10 week program geared for College and University aged students. This experience is designed to allow our summer interns to explore God’s call for their life in the midst of a busy, and arduous summer of service. This is a time when our interns are assigned to one of our ministry communities, to minister closely with our Outreach Staff. They collaborate together to plan and execute day camps throughout the summer weeks. Our day camps are designed to provide a safe place for our kids and youths to spend their break. Our interns are asked not only to plan a fun and creative day camp, but they are also asked to share God’s love by working with families and kids impacted by poverty.
Secondly, our Year Long Internship program is a 9-12 month experience. We accept candidates between the age of 18-25 (do not need to be a college or university student), who possess a strong Christian faith, and a deep desire to work longer term in an urban ministry setting. There are 3 components to this program: Academic Study of Urban Mission and Theology (15%), Spiritual Formation (25%), and Practical Ministry Experience (60%). The hope is that our Year Long Interns will cultivate, and develop leadership skills while ministering to families in communities impacted by poverty. Our Year Long Interns are asked to work closely with our Outreach Staff, in helping with programs, as well as learning about our various communities, and building healthy relationships. We challenge our Year Long Interns to help live out our mission, as we attempt to build strong relationships with our community members and partners to create positive, lasting change through preventative and transformational programs.
We have quickly realized how blessed we have been through our internship program. Not only have we hosted many God inspired, energetic, talented, enthusiastic, creative, young men and women, but an overwhelming majority of our current Outreach Staff are former interns!