Does your family calendar look like this? If it doesn’t there are 10 students in your ministry that it does represent. We are way too busy, and if you can’t slow people down you need to get ahead of their schedule.
Many times, those young bucks in charge of the kiddos are known as the last-minute man. Simply, don’t be that person. I had a parent approach me earlier this week telling me how impressed they were, being that they got a calendar for the entire school year last fall. This allowed them to plan family vacations around special dates, like camps and mission trips. It simply took me a few days to look at the school calendars and block out the times I needed from families to run special activities for our students and make a calendar.
I guarantee that forward thinking and planning will only increase your participation rate. It’s worth the investment.
When using forward thinking and calendaring out 6 plus months in advance respects the family and partners with parents to provide an experience for their child. With a game plan in hand, they will walk away aware of two things when you schedule a camp, mission trips, or a special event.
- Save the date. Most parents would say, “I want my kid at this church activity.” They are more responsible than the student and will mark it on the calendar making sure nothing gets scheduled on top of it.
- Save the money. They know this will cost money. (Even if they don’t, now you don’t have to feel bad announcing the price tag that is attached… they knew the $150 retreat was coming 6 months ago)
Now that I have done this for the past year, my job is simply to be consistent. Get the calendar in the hands of the parents late in the summer and do my best to stick to the same dates of camp/trips of the previous year. Consistency is your best momentum builder, this investment over time yields big rewards for your ministry as the years go on.
Do you have a plan for the next 6 months? 12 months? How will you communicate that plan to parents?