As spring break comes to a close, everybody now looks ahead to school getting out and summer plans. For church leaders, this should be a time when activities amp up in your student and children’s ministries. Hopefully, all summer camps are already on the calendar and families have committed to this life-changing week for their children. Summer camp is the opportunity to get students away from the church and into a setting to meet other students and worship the Lord. For many, these weeks provide a unique experience that will allow them to come back on a spiritual high and on fire for the Lord. As a church leader, what do you do after summer camp is over?
Often times so much energy is spent in preparation and executing the week of summer camp, that there is not much left for what comes next. However, with proper planning, one can effectively strategize how to take advantage of the spiritual high of camp to continue the momentum back home. Here are some ideas of how you can engage your students and families after summer camp ends:
- Properly communicate with the parents. This is essential to any student ministry regardless of a summer camp event. You can never communicate enough with parents when it revolves around their kids. Share with the parents the purpose of camp and the strategic plan to follow up after camp is done.
- Take the camp theme to the next level. Most camps have a cool theme they focus on during the week. Do your homework and plan on “piggy-backing” that theme in your general programming at your church. The seamless transition from the biblical theme helps reinforce that truth and principal.
- Incorporate good habits from the camp. Most camps prioritize worship and time alone with God. These disciplines are good for all believers, but for students can help them get in routine when they get back home.
- Bring camp home to your church. The kids usually consider the leaders on a camp staff, “rock stars.” These leaders are usually pretty young and have a flexible schedule. Consider bringing them to your church to speak or sing at your next gathering. This is another tie that links summer camp to your current ministry.
There are different seasons of busyness in ministry. The key concept is to plan ahead and lead your ministry under the guidance of the Lord to be effective in engaging your kids. If summer is your busy season, make sure to pace yourself and take breaks from time to time. By planning ahead, summer camp can provide the perfect springboard to helping your ministry grow numerically and spiritually.