About YWAM

About Youth With A Mission

Who is YWAM

Youth With A Mission is a non-profit, non-denominational organisation whose primary purpose is to know God and to make God known.

Also known as YWAM (pronounced ‘Why-Wham’), we are a global movement of Christians from many cultures, age groups, and Christian traditions, dedicated to serving Jesus throughout the world.

YWAM offers global opportunities for volunteers from diverse backgrounds to serve, care, and connect with individuals and communities. Founded in 1960, to get youth involved in missions, YWAM is now one of the largest interdenominational and international Christian ministries in the world. YWAM has about 18,000 volunteer staff (and thousands more affiliated workers) based in over 1100 locations in over 180 countries. YWAM staff and people once involved with YWAM are often known as YWAMers.

YWAM operates as a family of ministries and is decentralised in structure (no head office). Each centre is financially autonomous and runs itself, according to the vision and values of YWAM International. This allows each centre to adapt and serve the specific needs of its community.

What does YWAM do?

Youth With A Mission's activities span the globe and the dictionary.

From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe everything from accountancy spreadsheets to zoom lenses finds its place in the work of taking the good news to the world by word and deed. While many staff continue to work in remote places that are traditionally seen as "missionary fields," a large number are also focusing on the world's needy, vast urban centres. Although varying widely, all YWAM projects and events help form one of the three main strands, which weave together throughout the mission:

  • Change (Training)
  • Convey (Evangelism)
  • Care (Mercy Ministries)

Click here for more information on YWAM’s work globally.  


"I know of no other organization in the Christian missionary field that has produced and continues to produce such outstanding, mature and Spirit-led young men and women.”

David Aikman, author and former TIME Magazine editor

“I am a big believer in the philosophy of showing our faith through our actions, not just our words. That’s what I admire about YWAM – they take this philosophy worldwide!”

Michael W. Smith, Christian Musician

"Tear Australia has collaborated with YWAM in Asia/Pacific relief and development services for the past 20 years. Over this time, nothing has deterred us from having anything but the greatest respect for those parts of the YWAM organization with which we have dealt. Your willingness to be in the most difficult places; your capacity to deliver high-quality aid at low-cost; the dedication of your staff; your commitment to hand over responsibilities to local people in the shortest possible time; your discipline and accountability–these are qualities that make us feel honored to work with you.”

Peter Fitzgerald, Head of Tear Australia’s South Asia Team

“Wherever I go I seem to run into people who have been discipled into radical discipleship by YWAM. Those who have been a part of their program prove to be a great gift to churches around the world. Their spirituality, their ability to witness, and their commitment to take seriously the teachings of Christ have impacted Christendom. I can safely say that YWAM is one of the most important and effective movements in Christendom today.”

Dr. Tony Campolo, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Eastern College, Founder and President of Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education

“YWAM has been an incredible inspiration to thousands of people around the world – refreshing the parts other ministries cannot reach.”

Martin Smith, Christian Musician (Delirious?)

“YWAM provides a positive alternative for energetic young people. For some, the choice can be as clear and dramatic as rebellion versus submission. The danger and thrill of drugs, gangs and the street seduces them into rebellion from their parents’ world. However, YWAM offers similar excitement through an alternative means – submission to Jesus Christ. YWAMers love God and follow Him with the same reckless abandon that characterized the first century disciples.”

Dr. Gregory Fritz, Adjunct Professor, Whitworth University

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