can hear it up and down the hallways of your ministry. A chorus of
coughs. A symphony of sniffles. You can tell flu season is here and
taking its toll on both your kids and your parents. It's not too
late to take steps to avoid catching and spreading germs. Here are
three tips to help keep your ministry a healthy one.
1. Mesh bags- If you work with preschoolers,
try this tip out. Invest in a few mesh bags. Not only do they keep
all your kids' favorite plush toys together in one place, they make
it a breeze to take the toys home and toss in the washer. Of
course, as with all cleaning supplies, be aware of ingredients in
the detergent that could act as allergens.
2. Teach healthy habits- A simple step, but one
you need to take, is helping kids and volunteers know flu-busting
habits. The Centers for Disease Control website gives plenty of tips and hand-outs. My
favorite is that when you wash your hands, you should do so for 20
seconds. Encourage your kids and volunteers to wash their hands
while singing "Jesus Loves Me." When they're done with the song,
they should be about done with the hand washing.
3. Don't look for perfection- In an article for
Children's Ministry Magazine, Brad Hennessy shared ways to
keep your ministry healthy during flu season. I love how Brad
mentions that the quest for perfection may lead some parents to
bring their kids even if they're sick. "Some kids (and parents) try
so hard for perfect attendance that it can be tempting to go to
church simply to avoid being counted as 'absent.' Be thoughtful if
and how you reward attendance, especially during the cold and flu
season, and consider making an exception for sick days."
What steps do you take to keep your ministry healthy? Do you
have a sick child/sick volunteer policy in your handbook? Do you
have a plan in case you yourself get sick? Let us know in the
comment section below.