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Last-Minute List: Summer

Spring has sprung, and summer's standing by--are you ready?

Use our handy emergency-preparedness guide to ensure your summer ministry plans stay on track.

3 Ways to Get VBS Supplies

Waiting until May to order VBS supplies can leave you high and dry if your supplier is out of the items you need.

• Wait.
Order the supplies you need and wait. Sometimes items are on back order or may be returned by other churches that ordered too much.

• Ask.
Many curriculum companies offer alternative products or provide substitution ideas for crafts.

• Network.
Check with churches in your area to see if they over-purchased for their programs or would be willing to lend you a prop that's sold out.

School's Out!

Your weekend volunteers want a summer vacation--apart from volunteering in your ministry. Give them the break they deserve with these last-minute summer volunteer options.

• Parent Power-
Ask parents to supplement your summer openings by helping in a classroom at least once over the summer. Who knows--it may become your best fall recruiting tool!

• Merge-
If your attendance drops over summer months, consider merging into a multi-age program--these typically require less volunteer power.

• Collegiate Push-
Tap college students who are home for the summer as volunteers--their energy, age, and creativity captivate younger children.

• Off-Duty-
School employees often miss little faces when they're not in school. Ask them to bless you with their experience on Sundays during the summer.

4 Easy Programs to Connect Kids

Have you planned extra opportunities to minister to kids over the summer? Try these easy ideas.

• Park-and-Play-
Meet kids at a local park for lunch and an hour of play time. Use this time to get to know kids in a small group environment, free of programming worries.

• Church Mice-
Have kids sign up for a morning of doughnuts and service. Kids can come for a light breakfast on a Monday morning, then work together to clean your worship center, bathrooms, and common areas after busy Sunday services.

• Walk About-
Call a group of kids to meet you at a local trail head and venture into God's creation for hiking, conversation, and friendship.

• Bookworms-
Choose a kid's book and have it available for purchase during your weekend worship services. Choose one day a week for kids to come back to church for a book discussion. Let kids dress up as characters from the story or together make a snack that relates to the book.

180,000 = The number of U.S. churches that host VBS each year

52 Percentage of pastors who decided as kids to follow Jesus while at a Christian summer camp

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