One of the Wings for Wheels’s activities in the 2020-2021 season was the Introduction to the Leadership Training Program (ILTP), which took place from 10 February to 2 June. Several years ago, we developed this program to train people with disabilities who feel God’s call to start a Wings for Wheels branch in their place of living. ILTP’s first and so far only face-to-face course took place in 2014, and now we decided to try out how it works in Zoom format. Four people from Riga, Jelgava and Jaunkalsnava applied for the training. During six lessons, various important topics were covered: the history of Youth with a Mission and Wings for Wheels, God the Father’s heart, communication skills, small group leading, personality tests and motivational gifts. Although there are some disadvantages to teaching through Zoom, they are largely outweighed by the advantage that people who would find it much more difficult or even impossible to participate in person could participate in this way.
Our students treated the learning process with great responsibility, although for some it was not easy due to disability or health problems. After finishing the theory part of ILTP, they also had a practice part: each had to prepare and lead one small group lesson. The busy period of studying was officially ended by visiting our students individually and presenting them special diplomas as proof that they have devoted time and effort to their growth and readiness to serve others. During the individual meetings, we asked the students to tell what they have gained in the learning process and how they plan to use it in the future. For some, their vision is clearer, for others there are still many questions, but that means there still is a place to learning and improving. Perhaps not every of our ILTP graduates will become a leader in the traditional sense of the word, but they have gained knowledge and experience that can be useful whenever God would entrust them to take care of a person’s soul.