KiDs Beach Club®
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.
– Matthew 28:18-20 (NKJV)
KiDs Beach Club® (KBC) is an organization on a mission to make Jesus cool at school. KBC has developed a process for empowering the local church to take the Bible into public schools via engaging, after-school clubs that serve the most impressionable among us—children in grades 3 through 6.
Here’s how it all got started. KBC Founder Jack Terrell had been in full-time Christian ministry for over twenty years when he felt God tug his heart to lead children’s ministry at his church in a suburb of Dallas, Texas.
With a nudge from his senior pastor, Jack jumped in and created a groundbreaking ministry called Treasure Island, a Sunday morning children’s worship service that turned traditional children’s worship on its head.
Packed with lively songs, adventure themed messages, large group teaching, and smaller one-on-one interactions between children and the volunteers who lovingly served them, Treasure Island thrived with a fun “beach” theme.
Jack began to dream bigger. What if this model for impacting children could be repeated outside of the church walls? Would it still work—and where might they hold these “beach clubs”?
After meeting with many community leaders, Jack realized the obvious answer was to take the “beach clubs” to where the kids gathered five days each week—in school.
As he set out to create a fun, after-school experience oriented around the Bible, he encountered some people afraid of mixing public education and the Bible. But Jack persevered because he believed in the vision God had given him to help children engage with the Bible.
Thanks to the Supreme Court ruling Good News Club v. Milford Middle School (2001), he knew schools could not exclude Bible clubs from meeting on school grounds. So Jack and his team began to mobilize, partnering with volunteers from local churches to fulfill the mission to make Jesus cool in school.
As soon as the KiDs Beach Club® volunteers walked through the doors and began engaging 3rd through 6th grade students, they began to see a transformation. And school administrators enjoyed seeing students investing after-school time in a positive, character developing program that met all their legal and logistic requirements.
They soon saw the impact of the clubs as children learned core character values and began to share them with their peers. Plus, parents appreciated their kids having a safe and uplifting space to go after school each week.
In 2006, Jack Terrell devoted himself full-time to growing KiDs Beach Club®. Now more than 22,000 volunteers have invested in over 107,000 kids through clubs all over the country—and more than 9,200 children have made a profession of faith.
The path forward is clear, but the work is far from over. At the start of 2020, KiDs Beach Club® unveiled the Envision2K25 initiative, an aggressive step of faith to go where only God can take us.
Our goal is to equip local churches to add hundreds of new beach clubs across the United States with a goal of impacting 100,000 students per week in over 2,000 communities thanks to the dedication of over 25,000 volunteers.
We are “making Jesus cool in school” by partnering with…
- Pastors and church leaders who want to take the church into their communities,
- Volunteers appreciate the value of investing one hour each week to yield eternal rewards,
- Parents who want their children to succeed in life,
- School leaders who want students to learn positive character lessons, and
- Donors who believe in seeing kids evangelized and make professions of faith.
Why are you called KiDs Beach Club®?
It originated from the 2003 challenge to go outside the walls of the church at First Euless. The children’s ministry was attracting and reaching children through its kids’ church called “Treasure Island.” The setting was a deserted Island. The crew of seven was shipwrecked and stranded on the beach from a storm that blew their ship off course.
This effort, to connect children attending the Bible clubs to Treasure Island, is what generated the name Beach Club. It linked First Euless’ two ministries together, and kids loved it.
However, when we first founded the organization, an Internet search for “Beach Club” produced an unhealthy search result, especially for kids. A second search, using the name “KiDs Beach Club,” yielded better results. So on January 5, 2006, KiDs Beach Club® was born so kids could have a place to hang out and find God’s treasure!
But why is the letter D capitalized in the word KiDs?
No, it’s not a typo. It is a significant reminder of the uniqueness of children. Early in Terrell’s ministry he served at an amazing church, First Bossier in Bossier City, Louisiana.
One Sunday morning, while visiting the elementary Sunday school classes, he walked into a second grade class where the teacher had asked the children to write down and color the new name of the children’s ministry, Kids Kingdom. One caught his eye. A little girl had written “KiDs Kingdom.” When Terrell explained that the D did not need to be capitalized, she answered, “Yes, I know! But, I like it like that.”
“Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward.” (Psalm 127:3) The capital D is his reminder of the uniqueness of each child and how they are a priceless gift from the Lord.
By design, KiDs Beach Club® is geared to reach the preteen population, between the age of 8 and 12.
Studies show the chance of reaching people for Christ diminishes as they grow older. George Barna, in his book Transforming Children into Spiritual Champions, explains that “if you want to shape a person’s life – it is during the ages of 5 and 12; that lifelong habits, values, beliefs and attitudes are formed.”
Barna’s study, regarding at what age people come to accept Christ as Savior, highlighted the importance of reaching them when they are young.
It revealed the probability of people embracing Jesus as savior was 32 percent for those between the ages 5 and 12; 4 percent for those age 13-to-18 and 6 percent for people over the age of 19.
His conclusion was very simple. If we don’t reach people with the gospel as children, the probability is that they may never come to faith in Christ.
Our Corporate Headquarters
Our first location was a closet in the office belonging to Dr. Jimmy Draper, the president emeritus of LifeWay Christian Resources. Nine months later, as KiDs Beach Club® began to develop a staff, God provided two offices in Euless, Texas.
By 2013, this second location had expanded into 11 offices. In January 2016, at the invitation of a ministry partner, KiDs Beach Club® moved its corporate office to its present location in Bedford, Texas.
The new office suite features 3,200 square feet of office space and includes 12 executive style offices, two conference rooms, one large shipping and supply room, a fully furnished kitchen and a fully functioning training space.
Your Role in Our Story
KiDs Beach Club® is one of the fastest growing outreach ministries to preteens in the country.
We recognize that it is Father’s purpose for churches to reach out into the community. Our strategy is to partner with churches to fulfill the Great Commission, linking His churches to kids in public schools.
In Acts1:8 Jesus compels the church to go and share, “…and you will be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” For those in the KiDs Beach Club® family, that includes reaching children!
Reaching every third through sixth grade boy and girl of all economic, social and ethnic backgrounds is our goal.