IT may be a far cry from partying on a Thai beach but youngsters planning a gap year are being called on to ditch the sunshine for a placement working for the Church of Scotland.
The Kirk’s leaders are planning to recruit gappers aged 18 to 25-years-old for the Volunteering Vocations scheme which will begin in September.
As part of a new strategy to widen the appeal of the church, the new scheme will allow people to experience church life.
This will include helping out at parish coffee mornings and Sunday clubs for children.
Convener of the Kirk’s Ministeries Council, Rev Neil Dougall of St Andrew Blackadder Church, in North Berwick, said: “Those taking part will be doing hands-on work with people, getting to know them and doing little things which will make a big difference to their lives.
“This is more likely to appeal to someone who doesn’t want the constant partying type of gap year but goes and works in an orphanage in India or a school in Tanzania.
“It’s the kind of experience where you get involved with real people, see how they live, have an opportunity to use your skills and talents to make a difference.”
The placements would last for three, six, nine or 12 months.
The deadline for applications is February 27.