Throughout the year there are different opportunities to minister and support families. One of those times, the one that covers most of the year, is the school year. The school year can be a stressful time for families. Between homework, extracurricular activities, and busy schedules, families can often feel overwhelmed. That is why there is a tremendous opportunity for Churches to provide spiritual support and encouragement to help families stay grounded during the busy school year.
Here are different online and in person ways you can support families in and around your community this school year.
Bible Studies. Families are busy and while they may want to be part of a life group or in-person Bible study, they just don't have the time. Put together a Bible study that they can be part of. You can do one just for parents, or just for students or children, or you can do ones that are designed for families to do together. There are great platforms like YouVersion that enables you to do it easily on your smartphone or smart device.
Parents Group on Facebook. Parenting is hard. It would be so nice to form a parenting group on Facebook for parents to join and be encouraged in. You can share resources and encouragement while also encouraging parents to ask questions and talk about issues they are going through. You can even highlight and hold special events in that Facebook Group as well.
Email Encouragement. Families are busy, especially during the school year. Send them a weekly or every other week email encouraging them with a Bible verse, a parenting tip, maybe something to laugh at and whatever else you feel like parents in your local community could be encouraged with.
Refurbished Tech Supplies. School supplies are different today then they were 10 years ago. More and more schools rely on technology to teach. Your Church can collect and refurbish old tech to give to families in your community in need of these devices for school. It's a great way to serve your community by empowering tech skilled workers to practice and refurbish devices. And, it helps families in need that your Church doesn't currently serve.
In Person Ways
Parent meet ups and coffees. Raising children is tough and parents often feel alone and isolated. Even though they are not the only parents going through those situations, they may feel that way. That is why if you offer a parent meet up or coffee time, you can connect parents together and help them build support and potentially new friendships. You can do them monthly or quarterly, depending on the need in your area.
School Supplies. While many schools have gone to using tech and digital equipment for school, some basic supplies still are needed, especially for elementary school students. Supplies like crayons, pencils, notepads and rulers are always needed. Collect some throughout the school year and either give them to families in need or to the schools your families go to as a way to start building a friendship with the local schools.
Parents Night Out. As parents know, while they may love being a parent, it can be stressful and non-stop. That is why having a night where your Church offers free babysitting (and a fun night for kids), could be just what parents need. They know that their children will be well taken care of and they can have a fun time out with their spouse or significant other. It's a great way to minister to your community.
The Church has a unique opportunity to support families. There are online and in person opportunities. These are just a few that you can do. Pick and choose a few ideas that you Church can do and see how it supports and encourages families in your local community. Who knows, maybe this will be a great introduction to people who are in need of Jesus in their life and it makes an eternal impact.
What do you think? What are some other ways you can support families this school year? Share your ideas below or on social media.
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