Sarah Malik named first salaried Methodist Youth President

• First role of its kind in any mainstream UK Church

Sarah Malik has been elected Methodist Youth President at thisyear's Methodist Youth Conference. From January until September2009 Sarah will work full time to serve as an advocate andspokesperson for young people in the Church.

This new role is the first to be appointed in the Church's new£4million Youth Participation Strategy, launched at the YouthConference in Northampton last weekend. This is the first timesalaried positions have been specifically targeted at the 16 to23-year-olds in order that young people help guide the direction ofthe church.

Sarah, who is 20, said; 'I'm really excited about this new role.In my year of presidency I hope to spend time travelling Britainand listening to what young people in the Church have to say andwhat they want to see changing. I find it easy to motivate myselfwhen I am working towards something I love.'

Mike Seaton, Children and Youth team Director, said; 'This newrole is about encouraging and empowering the Church's young people.During Sarah's travels she will be able to challenge Methodists ofall ages to welcome the participation of children and young peoplein all aspects of the Church's work and life.'

Sarah is a carer at a residential care home in Eyam, Derbyshire.She enjoys cooking and watching films and is passionate abouthelping people to participate in worship through the creation ofprayer labyrinths.

The Youth Participation Strategy will also see 32 young peopleemployed in new, part-time salaried posts as District YouthEnablers across the Methodist Church in Britain.

Youth Presidents will be appointed to work full-time in the Churchannually from September 2009.