By Jennifer Smith
An effective children’s ministry requires an abundance of supplies and materials available at any given time. With a few hours of work and minimal expense, you can organize your supplies into a neat, efficient resource area.
- The first step in organizing is deciding on a location in the church that would be good for your supply room/closet. Ideally, an unused classroom is a perfect location, but many facilities do not have extra rooms available for that purpose. A closet or unused nook will also work. If none of these are available, consider acquiring a storage cabinet or shelves to place in one of your ministry rooms. It is preferable to have one central location for all storage instead of spreading it out in several classrooms. A larger church may need several storage locations for preschool and children’s supplies, while one storage room may be enough for a smaller church.
- Measure storage space and determine what size and how many storage containers and shelves you need. There are many cost effective options for storage. Clear plastic containers are preferred so you can see the contents of each box. Detailed labels on each container are important, otherwise you will forget exactly what you have. Labels can be computer printed or hand written. You may consider storing items alphabetically if numerous people use the resource room. Color coding also helps (i.e. Red for art supplies, blue for games, etc.).
- Begin sorting items into several general piles: art supplies, recycled materials, seasonal items, pre-made games and activities, game supplies, books, DVDs, etc. Tackle one pile at a time, organizing and tossing what you don’t need. Place all like items together. This process takes a bit of time initially, but it’s worth it when you have functional resource room. When new items are acquired, make a point of storing them in the correct place right away.
Plan monthly or quarterly clean-up days to straighten and file new or stray items. Doing this will ensure that your resource room stays functional for all those wonderful preschool and children’s ministry activities you are planning!
“But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way.” 1 Corinthians 14:40
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