August, in the southern hemisphere, means the end of winter. Hooray! There are always plenty of activities, family and community events and fun in August, too. But August always reminds me of fireworks. It’s because my son was birth in August and no, most people don’t experience fireworks on the birth of their child. But actually, I did with Ben. He was born during the week of Brisbane’s Exhibition (read ‘showday) and the hospital is just around the corner from the showgrounds. So, Ben was born as the evening fireworks exploded into the night sky.
Actually, I think enjoying fireworks would be a great thing to do in August but there are plenty of other things to focus on for your kidmin during August. I’ve included a list below of just 10. But before I start, I’d like to mention a little about using social media to enhance your children’s & family ministry.
Social Media and your children’s ministry
I’ve written briefly of the benefits of setting up and using a kidmin Pinterest board to connect with families. And it’s easy! But there are other platforms that you might consider using- Facebook, Instagram and more. Social Media can help you develop a connection both to those in your church family and to the wider community. It’s also a wonderful means of connecting, even training your leaders and volunteers. Michael Chanley states: ‘When we engage in community, whether online or in person, we allow God to connect us to people who will challenge us and inspire us to do better in our unique calling.’
You might like to read more about social media trends that you should consider for children’s ministry. If you’re not doing it already, you might like to consider setting up a page for your children’s ministry.
Social media content
One of the difficulties many find is that of sourcing ideas and fun content to include regularly on their ministry social media pages. Now, there are Bible verses that the kids are learning that you could upload, images of craft activities, games and Bible lessons that can be included. (Just omit any images of the kids.) You can highlight upcoming events. You can mention training events, conferences or relevant meetings. You could include links to helpful parenting articles or kids’ activity pages. You could link through to movie reviews or great resources, like family devotions,from your Christian bookstore. But what else?
Think about including interesting community news or upcoming events, as well. Build your social media page into a valuable go-to resource that connects the church family and community.
With this in mind, consider the following list for your ministry during August. Now, obviously, not all of these special dates will be accurate for your country/location but you might like to mention the date and create a fun focus anyway for your kidmin kids and families.
Now again, this will not be the same for every ministry, depending on where you live. But even if you don’t have a Family Fun Month nationally declared for August, why not declare one yourself for your church/children’s ministry and start planning some great events for your families this month?
Here are just a few ideas to get you started.3. Raise awareness of the homeless during Homeless Persons Week- August 3-10.
This is a growing concern within most communities. Do a little research within your area and highlight those organisations and people who are working to assist the homeless. It may be an opportunity for you to raise awareness of ministries within the church who are assisting and even to encourage others to join them in this outreach/mission programme.
5. Wear your jeans to work on Jeans for Genes Day.- August 7.
Involve yourself and encourage others to wear jeans as a fund-raising event for Children’s Medical Research Institute. Highlight this on your social media platforms and perhaps post some images of church staff in their jeans..
Highlight this on your social media pages and perhaps include an article link or images that reflect God’s love for all people of all nations. You might be able to highlight the work of church ministries within your community or overseas, too. Add some photos of the work to your social media.
7. World Elephant Day- August 12.
This day highlights the plight of Asian and Africa elephants. It might be an ideal opportunity to suggest families check out God’s World for Kids as a source of news-worthy articles/magazines from God’s perspective. Why not grab the attention on your social media with a fun clip like this one about a baby elephant trying to catch birds?
Is your church/ministry involved in mission work through World Vision or Compassion or similar? Highlight this mission work and list some of the prayer needs they are currently experiencing. How about considering the Step into My Shoes experience for families or groups? Or…. include a link for kids to do more than just read about kids in another culture, they complete online activities.
10. World Mosquito Day- August 20
World mosquito day honours the malaria work of Sir Ronald Ross.
Download the image and use it to encourage donations to fund mosquito nets to areas of the world fighting malaria. This can be done through World Vision and other organisations so provide a link for these donations or organise it through your church website.