Suggestions For Making Your “Local Workshop Training Program” A BIG Success…
We now recommend that churches consider shifting the main emphasis of their workshop from a “community event” to a local church “in-service training event” for their own teachers and leaders. (Persons from other churches will still certainly be welcome, but host churches should no longer plan on persons from other churches coming to their workshop to make up the minimum number of participants required for a workshop.) And, by emphasizing the event as in-service, targeted training for their own teachers and leaders, we feel that the host church will see even greater benefits..)
Listed below you will find information and suggestions for how to proceed as you begin the planning process for a successful workshop training event at your church…
Before you contact the Pennsylvania State Sunday School Association to even tell us what workshops and dates you are interested in, you should…
Talk to the leaders of your Sunday school church. Show them the “2016 Local Workshop Training Program” brochure and tell them why you think your church needs to host one of the P.S.S.S.A.’s workshops.
Encourage the Education Committee, Sunday school superintendent or your church’s Director of Christian Education to take the lead in working to get a “Local Workshop Training Program” scheduled at your church.
Have the Education Committee look at all of the workshops offered (additional information about each of the workshops is available on the P.S.S.S.A. website) and try to narrow down your workshop choice to the training program that you are most interested in.
Check your church’s schedule, talk to your pastor, talk to prospective participants and check your community and other church’s schedule (if you plan to invite people from other churches) to begin setting a date for your workshop. Try to decide on two possible dates before you contact the P.S.S.S.A. office. Important Note: To be effectively planned and promoted, we suggest that you start planning your workshop at least 4 to 6 weeks in advance of the date of the event.
Talk to your prospective workshop participants. The minimum number of participants for each workshop is 12. It is very important that you make personal contacts with as many of our prospective participants as possible and ask them for a commitment to attend. Ask them, “Will you come?” And remember, the only really effective way to do this is with a personal, one-to-one, face-to-face contact!
Once you have several workshop titles and one or two possible dates in mind and once you see that you will be able to have at least 12 persons attending, contact the P.S.S.S.A. We will need to talk with our trainers to see who is available on the dates you have in mind. (This may also help to determine which of the workshops we could present for you; several of our workshops are presented only by one specific leader.)
We will get back to you as soon as possible to let you know which of our trainers would be available to present which of the workshops on which of the dates you have given us. If several dates are open, we will allow you to make the final decision about which workshop you want to resent on the date of your choice.
When we have your workshop scheduled, we will send you an “agreement form” that you will need to fill out and return to us as quickly as possible. Information that you give us on this form will be used to create the customized brochure for your training event. This brochure will include a brief summary of information about the workshop itself, information about the workshop leader and local information (date, location, time, how to register, etc.). These brochures will help you promote the training event to your teachers, leaders and members, and they can also be used to invite people from other churches, if you choose to do so. In addition, we will now also prepare several posters (8-1/2” x 11” and/or 11” x 17”) for you to display throughout your church and community to promote your workshop event. In addition, we will mail a small packet of the promotional brochures to up to 15 churches in your area, if you request. (You must supply us with the mailing information for each church that you want us to send brochures to.)
Once you get the customized brochures and posters, continue to do all that you can to promote your workshop event. Have announcements placed in your weekly church bulletin, put information on your church website, encourage your members to share an invitation with their friends, and don’t forget, one-to-one personal contacts are always the best form of promotion. One week before your workshop, you will need to contact the P.S.S.S.A. office to let us know how many participants you are expecting for your workshop. We will need to know this number so that we can prepare worksheets and other materials for the event.
NOTE: I you cancel your scheduled workshop for any reason other than bad weather, you will be charged a $50.00 "cancellation fee" to cover the costs that have already been involved in preparing for and promoting your workship.
If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact the Pennsylvania State Sunday School Association office using the information listed below.
Pennsylvania State Sunday School Association
5915 Fox Street, Harrisburg, PA 17112
Phone: 717-652-1930 or 1-800-358-2303