Urbana Volunteers Will Host Thousands

Urbana News Release #6
For Immediate Release

(Madison,WI)—More than 2,000 volunteers will help bring Urbana 09 to St. Louis, December 27-31, 2009. Urbana 09 is InterVarsity Christian Fellowship’s 22nd triennial student missions conference. Anticipated attendance for the event, which will be held in the Edward Jones Dome and the America’s Center, is around 20,000.

Working from December 26th to January 1st, volunteers will help with registration, transportation, and other aspects of Urbana 09. Some who volunteer will have already experienced an Urbana conference for themselves and want to help others share the experience. Most of the volunteers will come from the St. Louis area, but a number of volunteers will travel to St. Louis for Urbana 09.

Urbana Volunteers Rally in September
Everyone who is interested in learning more about Urbana 09 and the volunteer opportunities available at the conference is invited to the Urbana 09 Volunteer Rally on Saturday, September 12, 2009. The rally will be held at Memorial Presbyterian Church, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Memorial Presbyterian Church is located at 201 S. Skinker Blvd., St. Louis. About 800 additional volunteers are still needed.

T.R. Carr, Chairman of the Department of Public Administration and Policy Analysis at Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville (SIUE) and the former mayor of the St. Louis suburb of Hazelwood, started volunteering with his wife Lucy at Urbana in 2000, when it was still held on the campus of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. “We believe in Urbana’s importance for the kingdom of God, but we also enjoy the chance to interact with students,” he said.

Calendar Presents Unique Challenge for Volunteers
The fact that the conference begins on a Sunday is challenging because many people would typically be in a worship service at the time volunteers are most needed for opening day. Deb Meyer, InterVarsity’s St. Louis Liaison and Volunteer Manager, said that ministry leaders are thinking creatively about how they can mobilize people to provide Christian hospitality and much needed support for Urbana attendees.

Over the past 60 years, InterVarsity’s Urbana conferences have been a life-changing experience for thousands. “We try to create an environment that allows God to work in the lives of Urbana attendees,” said Urbana director Jim Tebbe. “Volunteers play a very important role. One of the main reasons that our move to St. Louis for Urbana 06 went well was because of the local volunteers.”

For information about volunteering at Urbana 09, please visit http://www.urbana09.org/volunteer.main.cfm. There you can sign up and select a volunteer job assignment. Volunteers can either work as full-time stewards throughout the conference, or share in part-time duties before and during Urbana.

For more information:
Deb Meyer
(314) 308-8711