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5 Best Side Hustles As A Youth Worker

Tom Pounder
January 28th, 2020

Let’s be honest. No one wants to side hustle. Sure, it sounds cool and you are showing people that you work hard to get ahead in the world. But let’s make no mistake about it, no youth worker would really choose to do side hustle if they made enough money to support themselves and their families by doing what they truly love, youth ministry full-time with full-benefits.

Yet here we are, trying to figure out the best ways to use our skill set to get some extra money and do something on the side. While not ideal, the great news is that there are plenty of opportunities for youth workers get their side hustle on. Here are 5 of the best side hustles a youth worker can step into immediately.

Substitute teacher

This is a great way to make some extra money and do ministry at the same time. How is this doing ministry? Simple, you are placing yourself in a school where you get to know students all day. And, in a lot of school districts where there are teacher shortages, you could probably work most days. The more you are there the more money you can make and more connections with students you can create. Those connections will then, God willing, lead to conversations that can help lead a student to discovering God one day. Most substitute teachers can make anywhere between $75 – $125 per day.

Work at a popular coffee shop or eatery in your community

This is similar to substitute teaching, with the exception that you are working at a popular eatery or coffee shop in the community. Here you get a chance to have a ton of interactions with students and adults while also serving your community. Plus, in addition to the extra money and connections, you might even be able to get benefits and some free food at this job.

Sell Your Resources

There are a ton of resources out there for student ministers to use from a great amount of trusted ministry leaders. However, a lot of ministers also create a lot of their own resources. Take some of those games, devotionals, messages or trip ideas that you have done and sell them. You can either do it on a site you create or you can contact other ministry sites that allow youth ministers to post their content for a fraction of the selling price. One of our favorites would be Download Youth Ministry (DYM). DYM has an extensive “author” pipeline with revenue sharing for resources sold on their site. Learn how to submit resources here.

Partner with other ministry organizations

There are a ton of national and international ministry organizations out there. As a ministry leader, you could reach out and seek to find ways to partner and work with them. It could be a mission organization, youth ministry organization, or another ministry group that youth ministers use. When you partner and work with them, you can help improve your ministry while making some extra money. Some of these might be summer or weekend ministry organizations that you could lead worship, speak, or just offer program support.

Use your gifting and find something non-ministry focused to do

Finding some side hustle within the ministry context is great as there can be some overlap. However, it might be a great idea to take a break from ministry and try something different. As you know, being in ministry, you have, or can acquire, certain gifts that will help you in other lines of work. Hone in on what you are gifted at and look into a different job. Who knows, maybe something will pan out in case you decide to stop doing ministry one day.

Youth workers are gifted in many different ways. Unfortunately, they are not always able to make enough money to support themselves and their families. That is why it is great that side hustle opportunities are out there and can help youth ministers survive and thrive.

Which ones have you tried and have found successful for you?

Tom Pounder

Tom has a background in Student Ministry working over 20 years with teenagers and currently serves as the Student Minister and Online Campus Pastor at New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, VA. He blogs regularly at YMsidekick.com about student, social and digital ministry strategies.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the YS Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of YS.

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