My friend AC posted (on his blog yoacblog.com) a great summary about cutting and self-injury after attending a workshop at the Simply Youth Ministry Conference this past week. Here’s a clip of his notes, head there for the rest. Might make a solid handout/training for your volunteers:
What is Self-Injury?
It’s listed in the The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) published by the American Psychiatric Association as a Borderline Personality Disorder.
Self-harm is a response to a profound and overwhelming emotional pain that cannot be resolved in a more functional way.
What Self-Injury is not!
Self-Injury is not a half-hearted attempt at suicide
A relationally immature attempt to get attention
Body modification taken to the extreme
Notes: You must understand that it is not an attempt at suicide, but if the cycle continues it could be the result at the end of a fighting battle. The self-injurer is trying to save their life not take it. We must understand that we join them in the fight for their life. While there is definitely a spiritual battle going on, self-injury does not automatically equate to Demon Possession. It’s not just about attention, it’s deeper than that and it needs our full undivided attention.
Got a solid response from this post yesterday so I asked the volunteer behind the student-led project to give me some insight into how the video was made and the process of making the video for the past few months. Here’s some of what he sent along:
The Landing video was made entirely by students for students. It started with an idea to get rid of the static image that advertises the landing in the Refinery common displays with something that was a little more catchy. We also wanted to try and redirect the thoughts some students have about the landing which is that its for “those” students and so we were aiming for the concept that on the outside we appear all put together but on the inside we can still hurt and have alternate feelings that we are dealing with. We wanted to emphasize the idea that you are not alone and you shouldn’t go through it alone and so the initial thought is groups that go deep and have a safe place to share at the landing but they can also discover that Jesus Christ is right there with them and they are not alone.
The project from concept to finish took us 3 months. We work on a volunteer schedule of schools and all their extra-curricular programs. These guys are definitely committed. They all have tons of after school programs and academically we have been making sure their grades have not been taking a back seat as a result of being a part of the ministry and they are all B average and higher students. So they work extremely hard. This is a learning ministry. None of these students knew anything about animation before we started and most had never been a part of a real film production, let alone organized one so it was a great learning experience for all of them. They had to organize the dates to shoot, allocate equipment and resources from other teams (we are a ministry with $0 budget so everything was borrowed). They had to find actors and rehearse choreography for the film, they then had to design the content which was shown in the hands, motion track both hands individually, frame by frame (there are nearly 2,000 frames which you have to do twice). Then again add the slide content and then animate the signs in such a way that they have weight and appears that they actually live in reality and are not just digital. Finally they had to mask (cutout) the slides frame by frame to give it the effect of being held. They re-did this process about three times to get it to look right as they learned new and more advanced techniques along the way.
Finally we had Troy write and compose an entire original soundtrack for the piece. We spent several skype sessions together getting it just right before we went into the studio to record. We then had it mastered to make it sound really great.
As this project expanded we began to realize it could be used for more then just a simple ad in the Refinery Commons and had the potential to be used in a service (hopefully) and by other churches as they advertise their Landing program (super hopeful).
If you would like to get information on how to get this resource for your church and/or to customize it to include your churches specific information you can call 707-676-3342. Proud of the students who worked so hard on this project: Josh Campbell, Troy Sullivan, Ian Glatz, Jacob Lewis, Caleb Haine and Carson Daniels.
Designed for junior high and high school students, The Landing give you everything you need to lead young people in making Jesus the foundation of their lives, avoiding or breaking cycles of dysfunction, and experiencing God’s incredible forgiveness and healing.
Doug is super excited this week, and Josh, Matt and Katie are trying to figure out why. Turns out its all about the 00 hall of fame taking shape on the wall. After reviewing all the members of the new wall, Doug has a short discussion with special guest Nadim about Joshs new book. Then its time for your questions on: finding mentors, parent meet and greet ideas, how to help a student whose cutting (with a special video from Marv Penner), getting a job with only volunteer experience, and how to deal with volunteers drinking beer while out with students