I’m a youth worker in Texas and I hate bare walls! I needed some ideas for decorations for the youth room and I came up with this idea after talking with some youth. While in conversation with them, I heard a lot of them were into skateboarding, wakeboarding, water skiing, snow skiing, paintball, and so on – the “extreme” sports. They are also into the culture that goes with it – the clothes, shoes, etc. One youth said, “I’m trying to find clothes and stuff that fit this style but that not a lot of kids are into.” I told him I’d do some research for him. In the midst of my research, I found that a lot of these companies will send you stickers, posters, buttons, catalogs and sometimes other things like CDs, discount coupons for their companies, pens, pencils, and more – all for FREE (or at a minimal cost, at least!) With a lot of these companies, all you have to do is email them asking for stickers, etc. and they’ll gladly send you something. Some companies require you to send in a SASE and possibly a couple bucks but it’s worth it! When I get the packages, I put up stickers around the room (i.e. on the back of the youth room door, on the cabinet, on the sides of the dry erase board, on the air vents, on the trash can, etc.), and save a couple to put in a special box the youth can look through when they show up for church or midweek Bible Study. They LOVE it! Not only does it get them coming, they like to look around to see what’s new around the room!
I’ve received things from: Hurley, Atticus, Adio, DC Shoes, Element, O’neill, Quiksilver, Billabong, Es, Burton, Circa, Dakine, Alpinestars, Dr. Martens, DVS, Split, Jedidiah, Hawaiian Island Creations (HIC), Made, No Fear, Ocean Pacific (OP), Reef, Rip Curl, Rusty, Smith, Vans, Volcom, and MANY MANY MORE!
Like I said, the kids love it!
If you recognize any of these companies and might want to get something to surprise your kids, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put “Hey Justin, show me how to get stuff for free!” in the subject line and let me know which companies you’d want and I’ll gladly help you out! Or you can do your own research too! It’s SO simple!
I hope you enjoy connecting with your youth in this way, like I have!