Culture -

Event staffer shares what can defeat feelings of failure —

By CIY Staff

Nikki Campagna knew her Kingdom work this summer as a MIX event staff member would be challenging, but she didn’t anticipate an internal battle that would strengthen her faith tenfold.

The Orange County, California native has participated in CIY events since she was in Jr. high, and said it is a “God thing” that connected her to a summer internship with MIX.

“It’s been so hard but equally as wonderful,” Campagna said. “But as difficult as the difficult moments get, the wonderful moments are just as intense and it makes it all worth it. What helps is recognizing Satan is there, trying everything to stop amazing Kingdom work. I didn’t expect to feel defeated – feeling like I’m not good enough – but everything is worth it because it’s all for Jesus and the students. I didn’t expect to have those kind of realizations or to have such an amazing team. They’re all so hard working, and they’re all so passionate and supportive of each other. I love them.”


Emotions of self-doubt and low self-worth are common battles for most young people, and Campagna said the Lord continues to shine truth in her life. It’s a message she hopes middle school students realize this summer.


“I am really passionate about people knowing their identity because that was my struggle going into Jr. high and then high school,” she said. “Knowing your own worth and bringing out the gold in others is so important. I really want to encourage Jr. high students to know who God has made them to be. He loves them so much, and that’s how valuable they are. He went to the cross for them. The cross has so much freedom. We don’t have to measure up, or be cool, or be anything when we can just be ourselves.”


After MIX this summer, Campagna plans to return to California State University-Fullerton to pursue her degree in youth and adolescent development. She said she is still hearing a calling from God to serve in youth ministry – a call she’s heard since her sophomore year of high school – and is still loving her experiences with CIY.


“As a student, you see these events for the passion and how cool it is that CIY empowers students to be Kingdom workers,” she said. “Now being a part of the team and understanding how we’re equipping and empowering the local church and helping youth pastors pastor their students is so cool. We’re setting up a platform for Jesus to do really cool things and that’s so exciting to me.”


Fun Fact About Nikki: she loves working in distracting settings. That often means doing some occasional homework at Disneyland. “It’s so California,” she said. “I’m embarrassed to speak it aloud. But it was fun while I was getting work done.”