"You really don't have to have much money to have fun with the girls in your church," Leslie Hudson said. "Mostly, you need time."
Hudson is girls' ministry leader at First Baptist Church in Dickson, Tenn., and was one of the breakout session leaders for the Girls' Ministry Forum in February at LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention in Nashville, Tenn. About 300 girls and leaders attended.
Hudson said most churches don't have much of a budget for girls' ministry and many don't have any budget at all.
"I have a goal for many of my events to stay below $5 person," she said. "What I really look for is 'free.'"
Hudson said when planning an event for girls, don't hesitate to ask other godly women in your church for help.
"This is a great way to involve women from older generations with the girls," she said.
-- Supplies: For example, if you want to have a scrapbooking party with your girls, ask the women in your church who scrapbook to donate materials.
-- Money: Many women will be glad to sponsor a girl for a conference or give money for an event.
-- Help: Ask women who may have an ongoing involvement in the ministry to help with specific projects and activities. This might include driving, opening their home for an activity or helping with a project such as baking cookies.
-- Influence: Every church has women who are influencers. Ask them to get on board with the girls and create opportunities for service or recreation.
-- Expertise: If you have a woman in your church who knits, ask her to teach girls who are interested in learning. If there is a woman who is a photographer, ask her to help the girls learn how to take better pictures. Whatever a woman can do, she can teach to a girl.
Hudson reminded the women that not everyone needs to be involved in everything.
"It is OK to divide the girls into small groups and just have an activity with two or three girls. Just make sure that over the long run everyone is included in some activity."
She also said that not everything has to be a Bible study.
"It is important to do Bible study with the girls," she said, "but it's OK to do some fun stuff that builds relationships."
She also encouraged leaders not to be the planner all the time.
"Let the girls get involved and be leaders. They love to plan and create activities. Give them some boundaries, get out of the way, and let them go."
Polly House writes for LifeWay Christian Resources.
Copyright (c) 2011 Southern Baptist Convention, Baptist Press www.BPNews.net