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Have joint presidency meetings with the Young Men's presidency on a regular basis.
Hold BYC and Aaronic Priesthood/Young Women meetings monthly. You might need to remind everyone who needs to attend and when it will be held.
Plan ahead with the youth so everyone will know what is expected of them. Then BYC meetings are easier to manage--everyone already has a game plan. One leader wrote:
In August every year we have a big planning meeting with all the youth. All leaders are required to come as well as a member of the bishopric. We provide a list of the previous year's activities and some new suggestions. We let the youth decide what they want to do and then we plug those activities into our calendar. Then, we make assignments as to who does what, for activities, for firesides, for everything! So everyone knows what their part is. ~Louise H.
Try picking out a theme for the joint Young Men/Young Women activities (adapt A Year of Activities With a Theme). This can help focus activities and Sunday Evening Discussions (or Firesides). This makes it easier to Plan With a Purpose.
Show enthusiasm for their plans. Ask them questions about the activity and sound enthusiastic when you hear any part of the plan. If the plan is less than what you hoped or expected, work with it. This is true, even if your organizations seem to have conflicting needs. Here's a real-life example: The girls didn't want to go swimming for an activity. The boys wanted to be with another ward. And somehow, we managed to get invited to a swimming activity with another ward on our joint activity night!!! The Young Men were in charge. I helped the girls become more enthusiastic by planning games that could be done nearby in normal clothes. We ended up having a very good time, even though it wasn't what we thought would be fun.
If there are problems . . .
If Young Men or their leaders don't follow through the way you want them to, work with them in appropriate ways. As one man put it: Don't give up on the YM leaders. Help them fulfill their potential. (Jay Cheney)
Talk to the young men and their leaders. Express how much you need them to do their important part. Show them how valuable they are by letting them see what happens if they don't follow through versus when they do. Otherwise, they think, why bother? Someone else will bring ______ and it will be even better than what I'm supposed to bring. Sometimes, you just have to let them fall. If they didn't bring the refreshments, then there aren't any refreshments. If people miss it, they'll complain to the people in charge and that will be different than if you complained.
We try to say, "What can we do to help you fulfill your callings and responsibilities?" We don't do it for them, but we make it more possible for them to do it, plus it is a gentle reminder.
Keep a good attitude, especially in front of the youth. I try not act discouraged with them, even just in front of the yw, because they pick up on it and then the yw don't respect the ym or their leaders.
Talk to your Bishopric advisor if problems continue.
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