Tag: Training

Create a safer place

One of the very best things we can do in our ministries is to create a safe place for kids when they’re with us. Yes, we want environments where kids can have conversation in confidence when that is needed, but that’s not what I’m talking about. Our actual environments need to be safe. We have to have a place where parents know and feel that their kids will be happy and whole when they come back to pick them up.

I wrote a post a few weeks about about this very issue, but from a slightly different perspective on the Lead Small Blog. Yes, if our environments aren’t safe, families won’t come back. We all get that. But sometimes perception is reality. You may have a safe environment and your volunteers might follow all the procedures, but there is a perception issue that is going to trip up some of your families. It’s important to recognize that our culture is becoming more and more skeptical and what may have worked five years ago doesn’t anymore.

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Illuminate Conference 2014

So, I’ve been a little quiet about the Illuminate Conference this fall. Normally I’m promoting it pretty heavily already. In case you’re a new reader, Illuminate is a conference that I launched a few years ago at my church. Illuminate’s goal was to equip, empower and encourage those who serve kids in the local church. It was a conference that was both local and affordable, designed specifically for the volunteer in mind. No other conference put together such a high quality lineup of communicators for such an affordable event for volunteers. Oh, and Illuminate has been so successful. The first year saw nearly 1000 attendees in three cities and the second year saw nearly 2000 participants in five cities. What a fun ride.

So, what’s new this year? Well, my vision for Illuminate became bigger than my capacity to run it on my own (remember, I’ve got a full time gig too). So, I asked Orange to come in and help me take Illuminate to the next level and I’m so excited to see what Illuminate is becoming. Sue Miller and Amy Fenton have taken the reigns and are putting together an amazing team of communicators and assembling top notch content and are packaging it in a format that is new, but even more strategic than I’ve done in the past.

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Is your ministry safe

Because of the events last week in Connecticut where innocent children were killed, most everyone who works with kids is thinking, “what if that happened in the place where I work?” If you haven’t had this thought, you should. We are charged to take our role as both physical and spiritual guardians very seriously and we should do everything we reasonably can to make our ministry environments a safe place for the kids who come.

So, before I write any more content on this subject and before you read any further, ask yourself this question. Where are the weak spots in your ministry? Where are the places that need to be shored up to keep your kids, families and volunteers safe. I’m crazy about safety and over the weekend, several areas came to mind, things we can do better or ways we can make our ministry area more secure. What comes to your mind?

Here’s the challenge. Take action on at least one thing this week. Bust it out and make it happen. It’s worth the effort and if it’s a public change, it communicates good things to parents.

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