A monthly meeting alive with the Spirit provides support for children, parents, families, caregivers, and teachers, all of whom need loving care. We often fall short of our ideals. However, in nurturing our children and youth, we provide for them a more hopeful life, and together we shape the Religious Society of Friends and witness to the wider world. It is a responsibility we do not take lightly. Children are a gift from God and our care of them as they grow to adulthood is our gift to the future. — SAYMA Faith and Practice
We seek to support our youngest Friends and Quaker families in our yearly meeting community. In order to make this possible, children attend SAYMA for free. Registration fees and meals are subsidized for young Friends until they are rising 7th graders and eligible to participate in Southern Appalachian Young Friends (SAYF). Children are allowed to stay with their adults for no additional charge.
This year SAYMA will provide safe and nurturing care opportunities for young Friends (infants to rising 7th graders). Babysitting, Playcare, and Junior Yearly Meeting (JYM) are opportunities to learn through play and reflection, foster friendships, build community. We want parents, grandparents, and caregivers to attend business meeting, plenary sessions, worship sharing, and workshops as they wish and are able.
The JYM and Playcare coordinators are hired from within our Yearly Meeting, and are members or regular attenders of one of the SAYMA monthly meetings. All child care workers and volunteers at SAYMA meet the requirements of SAYMA’s child safety policy.
JYM is a loving and nurturing place for the children of Southern Appalachian Yearly Meeting and Association. For four days (Thursday-Sunday) of Yearly Meeting young Friends meet together to make connections, have fun, and engage in reflection on the year’s theme.
JYM is for school aged children from rising 1st graders through rising 6th graders. Our time together runs concurrently with adult programming. Children involved in JYM get opportunities to play games, make crafts, visit the Warren Wilson farm, walk in the creek, build community, share their talents with the wider community, and reflect on the annual SAYMA theme.
JYM is a great way for school aged children to connect with the wider Quaker community. For many families, friendships are built and memories made at SAYMA that significantly enrich their children’s lives. Friendships that last a lifetime are made here.
Once you register for SAYMA, we will contact you with details about our planned activities.
SAYMA Playcare is for toddlers and preschoolers, ages 2 to rising kindergartners. Playcare is a safe and nurturing program dedicated to offering childcare with qualified adult caregivers.
The Playcare environment is simple but offers opportunity for solo and interactive play. While we cannot provide equipment such as cribs for sleeping, we welcome families to provide portable equipment as may be needed by their child.
Once you register, we will contact you with more information about Playcare at SAYMA.
This year the JYM committee hopes to compile a list of volunteer babysitters at SAYMA from within our Yearly Meeting. All volunteers will be members or regular attenders of a SAYMA monthly meeting and comply with the SAYMA child safety guidelines. Volunteer babysitters can be available for 1-2 hours at a time and not more than 4 hours depending on their schedule. While we cannot provide equipment such as cribs or seats for infants, we invite families to provide portable equipment as may be needed.
The JYM committee will work to connect families of infants who wish to attend adult programming at SAYMA with a volunteer babysitter. Any families who are interested in infant care for any portion of SAYMA will indicate this when they register.
Once registered we will contact you about your childcare needs and make an effort to connect you with these volunteers before and during SAYMA.