I remember the first day on the job as a girlsminister. It was our fall retreat! I was surrounded by cliques of girls and I couldn’t figure out how to get inside of one of those circles. They all seemed to be looking at me—the new girl—and sizing me up. Didn’t they realize I was an adult and the girls minister?! I think I thought there would be instant connection like there was when I worked summers at the large Christian camps. Just because I was camp staffer, I often had students come up and start talking with me about some pretty heavy things. But, this was not how it was on my first day on the job. There were some sweet people that tried to come over and introduce themselves but mostly it was cliques. Then on Sundays and Wednesdays there was the hallway that I renamed “The Gauntlet”. It was a horrible hallway because you had to walk down it to get into the sunday school room and lining every square inch of wallspace were groups of girls that weren’t talking to me but to each other. Very intimidating! I’m very thankful for the gauntlet and for that first fall retreat because it reminds me of what it feels like to be new in our student ministry. It’s scary!
That’s why I worked with some leaders and some girls to have a strategy to receive new girls into our student ministry. The idea is the 1-2-3 CLICK! method. Now understand that we don’t just go around saying “hey new girl…this is how we’re going to get you connected in three clicks.” This is just something that I have used to explain to students or leaders to help them understand how to continue reaching out to new people that have been introduced to our student ministry.
Here’s the basic premise:
1. Meet a girl who is unconnected and introduce her to her peer group.
2. Take her to coffee or introduce her to a peer or leader which will take her to coffee to get to know her.
3. Get her connected to a lifegroup of girls who have hung out with her or introduce her to a relationship building catalyst like Snowball Girls Retreat. AND CLICK! She’s in.
I have observed that typically after 3 intentional relationship connections from you the leader, to a healthy peer group, to a bonding event or small group and the student will click into a place they feel welcomed and known within your student ministry. How do you get girls connected and help them feel safe, loved and known in your student ministry?Tweet