News Release

Start Young Program Prepares Youth for Full-Time Mission

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in cooperation with The Academy for Creating Enterprise (ACE) recently launched the Start Young Program in support of the I Will Go, I Will Serve campaign of the Philippines Area Presidency of the Church.

The program aims to train prospective missionaries on entrepreneurship, with the specific goal of helping them start small income-generating activities (IGA) to raise mission preparation funds. Targeted at children and youth, the three-day training is held virtually with an emphasis on coaching and mentoring. The teaching methodologies incorporate stories, case studies, videos, games, group activities, and visuals.

Micah Abish Barili is a second-year college student from Biliran District taking up Elementary Education. She is preparing to serve a full-time mission and hopes to start serving in October 2022.

During the pandemic, she wanted to sell clothes online like some of her Facebook friends. Since capital was a challenge, she convinced her friends to accept her as a reseller on a consignment basis. She also worked as a tutor for younger students referred by her sister. One great lesson she learned in the Start Young Program is how to properly allocate funds for her mission from her IGA. The breakeven point taught her how much she needed to make each day to recover her capital and be able to save some of her profit for her mission.

“I’m really thankful that I have been introduced to this program. I have gained more confidence because selling teaches me how to deal with customers. I am also happy that I can raise funds to support my mission,” Micah said.

After buying her own scripture set, Micah currently has 15,000 pesos saved.

“What is great about the training is that I am reminded that after serving a full-time mission, I can always get back to doing business to fund my education and other needs in the future,” she added.

Before attending the ACE intervention, Mark Nerosa, a 21-year-old young man from San Francisco Stake (diocese), narrated that he didn’t have the desire to serve a mission because he was focused on completing his college degree. But because of the lessons and training he received from the Academy, his perspectives changed.

“The training’s coaching and mentoring sessions helped me discover my talents and resources that made me start my business and eventually earn and save,” he mentioned.

Mark now has an online tutorial service and has so far saved 6,000 pesos for his mission. He has been working with his bishop and has set July 2024 as his mission date.

“I am very grateful to my church leaders who invited me to join the program. Now, I already have the burning desire to serve the Lord with all my heart, might, mind and strength and bring many souls unto Christ,” he stated.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have always been taught the importance of acquiring education in both secular and spiritual aspects. As part of its commitment to providing opportunities for secular and spiritual educational growth, the Church offers several educational programs and initiatives.

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