Fundraiser to Provide Global Young People’s Convocation Scholarships

NASHVILLE, Tenn. August 17, 2017 /Discipleship Ministries/ — United Methodists around the world are being invited to join the 80 Days to 80K fundraising challenge to provide scholarships for young people to attend the 2018 Global Young People’s Convocation (GYPC) in Johannesburg, South Africa.

80 days to 80k logoGYPC, the most extensive global gathering of United Methodist young people, is held every four years by Young People’s Ministries (YPM), a unit of Discipleship Ministries. It is a time for worship, fellowship, leadership development and conversations about pressing issues and challenges facing young people.

“Providing a means to include young people from across the church in the Global Young People’s Convocation is essential for the event and young United Methodist leaders. It has been life-changing for those involved,” said Michael Ratliff, Associate General Secretary at Discipleship Ministries and head of the YPM unit.

YPM launched the 80 Days to 80K challenge on July 27, and all funds raised will provide scholarships to those selected to represent their jurisdiction or Central Conference as voting delegates.

These scholarships are critical to ensure a fair representation of young people from all locations of The United Methodist Church, Ratliff said. The voices of young people are incredibly valuable, and finances should not stop them from being heard.

“The #80Days80K fundraising campaign will help ensure that the voices of young people from around the world, regardless of economic ability, are present at the GYPC."
- Mike Ratliff

“Many of our United Methodist young people come from countries where youth unemployment is high and the average person lives on less than $3.10 per day. Scholarships are the only way many will ever be able to participate in an event like this,” Ratliff said.

GYPC participants represent a variety of social, economic, cultural, political and even theological backgrounds, creating a unique environment for sharing faith and stories with one another.

YPM is inviting United Methodists to find fun ways to participate in the 80 Days to 80K fundraiser, like riding a bike for 80 kilometers or organizing an 8k race. The goal is to be creative and join people around the world to raise support for GYPC scholarships. More information and signup details can be found at

The fundraising event will wrap up on Oct. 14, and YPM is planning a big ‘80s party in both Nashville and Manila, Philippines, to celebrate and raise donations. Others are invited to host their own gatherings on the final day of fundraising around the world.

“The Global Young People’s Convocation is a great event for young leaders of the UMC to come together, share stories with each other and get a glimpse of what it is like to be a global church,” said Mighty Rasing, director of YPM Program Development for Central Conferences. “The #80Days80K fundraising campaign will help ensure that the voices of young people from around the world, regardless of economic ability, are present at the GYPC.”

The mission of Discipleship Ministries is to support annual conference and local church leaders for their task of equipping world-changing disciples. An agency of The United Methodist Church, Discipleship Ministries is located at 1908 Grand Ave. in Nashville, Tenn. For more information, visit, the Press Center at or call the Communications Office at (877) 899-2780, Ext. 1726.

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