Tip: Be Creative in Your Planning.
Being the student ministry of a church plant, there isn't much left in the budget for programming. But I want to create events that my students love, would bring their friends to, and won't cost the budget an arm and a leg.
Yesterday I share the tip of having students bring snacks to your event as a way to conserve your financial resources. Today's tip is similar.
BE CREATIVE IN YOU PLANNING.
We all want to host the event that student remember for the rest of their lives while maximizing opportunities to build relationships and share Jesus. Sometimes a little creative planning is necessary to make both a reality. Here are few Creative Planning Tips.
1. Free is ALWAYS GOOD. The best way to save the budget is to host events that won't cost you anything. In just about every community there are activities that you can do that are free to the public. Parks, hiking trails, playgrounds, community activities, and the backyard are great places to start look. Also, keep an eye on your local media outlets for local events that are no-charge events. But when looking into the "free" options, be sure you know what you are getting into. Free maybe good, but not always great. At the same time, games nights, movie nights, or special TV watching parties are always great "free" activities. There is a lot to do that is free, if you take the time to look.
2. Look for the Low Cost Possibilities. Sometimes you can't avoid a the "fee-factor." When this is the case, check to see if there are low cost options to consider. For example. Our students have talked about going ice skating this winter. I have called around to a few ice rinks for group/party rates because they are usually cheaper then general admission. But the price per student was still pretty steep. Unless I could guarantee a very large group, the cost would do us in. The Low Cost Option. We have a local Christian Radio station in our community. Every winter they host "Family Skate Nights" at selected ice rinks. The station rents the entire rink, supplies a DJ (that means Christian music will be played) and offers tickets at greatly discounted rates! SCORE! Now I can take my group ice skating. The price is right. The event location is covered. And I know that the activity will be "up-lifting."
3. Tag-Team Your Next Event. Another way to keep cost down is to tag-team with other local ministries. By pooling your resources you reduce the financial impact to your budget, increase the potential for a more successful event, share the planning and organizing responsibilities, and increase your target audience! Over the years I have had the opportunity to share events with a number of great ministries. Not only is it a great way to create events for your students, it's awesome opportunity to do Kingdom Ministry on a larger scale. Working with local ministries is a wonderful testimony to the community and a great way to knock down the "other-church" walls that we too often put up out of our own pride and fears. (That's another blog topic right there.)
Anyhow, I hope these three ideas help you as you think about your low-cost events. I will be sharing some of the low-cost events that I have hosted over the years in the coming weeks. So keep your eyeson the blog!