Here we go with another post about an online time-waster you can use in Children’s Ministry. Facebook is the culprit this time. Seriously, I use it quite a lot, and not just to wile away the hours on silly stuff.
These are the ways I’ve found it to be useful:
1. Keep Updated on People — It can be difficult to keep up-to-date on all that is going on in people’s lives, especially if you’re relying solely on the few minutes you’re able to talk with them on Sunday morning. I learn about who has sick kids, who’s having a bad day, whose birthday it is, and get to know fellow church-goers better by seeing their activity and dialogue. For busy moms, this might be the best way to reach them.
2. Online Ministry Presence — Our church has a Facebook page, but we also have one for our children’s ministry. I don’t want to bog down the church’s page with all our photos, videos and shout-outs. People like to see photos to find out what exactly is going on when they leave their kids on a Sunday morning. Potential visitors also appreciate a sneak-peek, to see if it’s a place they are comfortable sending their kids, and if their children will enjoy it. (When posting photos, I would encourage you to post larger group shots so that individual children are not easily identified.)
3. Group Page for Volunteers — I have a secret group page to keep in touch with volunteers and let them know what is going on. This can be really helpful when you need to get information out quickly, or get feedback. I’ve expanded the usefulness of our group by adding some extras. We have a fairly robust photo area, with albums dedicated to Games, Christmas Supplies, Easter Supplies, Craft Supplies, Visual Aids, Puppets, Building Materials, and Worker Development Materials. Each photo has the specifics, such as size, number of item, and its location. This saves me a lot of remembering and digging. It also makes the information available to all, so others can plan activities and find things with confidence.
4. Events — A great way to let people know about your upcoming events, whether for the church as a whole, the public, or just your volunteers. Get the specifics out to everyone, find out who’s coming, and update information as needed. If only I could get more people to RSVP. 😉
5. Parents & Volunteers Get to Know You — Used correctly, Facebook can be a great way to let those you’re working with and for, get a look into your life and who you are. Let’s face it — the better someone knows and likes you, the more likely they will want to work with you and stand with you in your area of ministry. We just have to use prudence when deciding what to post.
Facebook is my number one tool for staying in regular touch with my volunteers and parents. I really have to police myself though, so that I’m not checking it every 15 minutes to get the latest updates.