Getting Started

Greetings Friend,

When we first meet with school and church leaders about initiating a partnership, they love the idea but they don’t know how to get started. At these times it is a privilege for UpWorks Enriching Schools to share our experiences from previous partnerships and watch as the leaders catch a vision for how it could work in their unique setting.

Enriching Schools sees at least four valuable starting points where a church can impact their community by serving their local school. Each church has different abilities and passions so choosing a way to serve that feels like a good fit for the church helps everything get started on the right foot.

Consider These Ways a Church Can Impact a School:

Events – A church can offer volunteers to help special events at the school run smoothly.

Examples Include:

      • Beginning of the year Open House or Back to School Nights.
      • STEM Nights, Science Fairs, and other academic gatherings.
      • Track and Field Days, Dramas/Concerts or other performances.
      • Chaperoning field trips.
      • Any special event that is important for the school community.

On-Going Volunteer Service – Just a small number of volunteers can make a great difference!

Examples Include:

      • Tutoring – Reading, math, spelling, or a more sophisticated subject for those who have specific skills.
      • Breakfast or Lunch Buddy – Use one meal a week to make a child feel special and important.
      • After School Programs – Spend time doing what you love with a small group of students.
      • Recess Supervision – Imagine the freedom that gives already stretched staff members.

Material Donations – Giving time can be difficult but well-targeted generosity blesses everyone.

Examples Include:

      • School Supplies – Begin collecting during the summer to start the school year right.
      • Winter Clothing – Needed when winter begins and as students return from Christmas break.
      • Teacher Appreciation – Basket of treats or table of food to accompany special school events.
      • Food for over weekends or holiday breaks – Hungry students need food in order to do their best in school.

Use of Space – The use of a church facility can be used to greatly benefit students or school services.

Examples Include:

      • Off-site for large group/one day training – Leadership, class team-building, and anti-bullying.
      • After school place for students to gather – Safe, supervised, maybe even entertaining/enjoyable.
      • Meeting place for Parent Groups – PTO, class events, parents of specific student groups.
      • Anything unique that the church has to offer.

Using this simple list to consider what your church could offer a school just down the street. If you have additional ideas of how your school can benefit from having a church partner, please contact Ken Norman at ken@upworksmn.org. It is a privilege for us to work with church and school leaders as they discover the starting point for building a relationship that can impact the whole community.

Enriching Schools: Impacting the whole community, one student at a time. 

That’s what we do!

Blessings,

Ken Norman
Director of Enriching Schools