Żgħażagħ Azzjoni Kattolika (ŻAK) is a branch of the Maltese Catholic Action and its’ fundamental purpose is to provide programs of spiritual, social and personal development. The aim of this process is to affirm an individual in his or her proper identity and involve him or her in relationship with God and others.
The organisation focuses on working with young people aged from 10 years onwards and is a voluntary-based, non-profit organisation. Currently, ŻAK consists of approximately 700 members, in 12 different parishes, including young leaders and youth workers.
Members from every parish belong to a different youth group according to their age. Therefore a locality might have only one ŻAK group, whereas another may have more. The number of groups and the age range of the group members depend on the needs and resources available. Each ŻAK group has a regular weekly meeting. The members under the direction of their youth leaders/youth workers, utilise the allocated time to not only socialise, but also to develop and experience life skills. All this is achieved through structured and unstructured sessions which may take the form of discussions, role-plays, hands-on activities, reflections and games amongst others.
ŻAK gives utmost importance to the active involvement of its members. At the early stages of the group, especially when the members are still young, most of the planning of the programme of meetings and activities is carried out by the leaders with little involvement of the participants. However, as the group grows within the organisation, the members gradually involve themselves more in the thinking and action process. The leaders’ responsibility is to ensure that the material covered meets the real needs of the young people.
Besides the weekly meetings every group organises its own activities. These activities vary from social events, community work, fundraising activities, live-ins, twinnings between different ŻAK groups, international exchanges and other educational activities. In addition to these activities, the young members participate in activities organised by other ŻAK groups, by ŻAK on a national and international basis, by Aġenzija Żgħażagħ, the National Youth Council and by the Maltese Diocese.