It’s got lots of tips and hints on easy ways to make your Messy Church work on shoestring because ‘you don’t need posh crafts’.
How do we finance our Messy Church?
- Borrow craft supplies and basic equipment from other people for the first few sessions: friendly Brownies, Cubs, playgroups and so on. Invest in your own when you are sure that your Messy Church will be long-term.
- You don’t need ‘posh crafts’ every time or even most of the time: some of the most successful activities use junk.
- Think about seasonal natural materials that can be collected for free, such as pine cones, feathers or mud.
- Investigate your local scrap store.
- If your church already has a large banner, for an Alpha Course for example, you could use the blank reverse side for a Messy Church banner. Remember that the CPO banners and other resources not only look great but also contribute towards BRF’s costs to run Messy Church centrally.
- Make friends with large stores that may have huge ex-display card shapes to donate.
- Opt into supermarket community schemes. Ask your local supermarket for help. Many employ community champions.
- Supermarket bag-packing is a popular fundraiser. Invite different families to take part each time. Use this activity as a promotional opportunity by giving out leaflets.
- Messy Church teams could share the crafts and food outlay.
- Invite the Messy Church congregation to bring food for Messy meal sharing a couple of times a year. It could be cold meats or quiches, and your Messy Church could supply the salad and bread rolls.
- Ask your core team where they go to do their family food shopping. If a variety of shops are highlighted, ask them to look for food bargains each month. Use a Messy food checklist of basic needs such as paper plates, sausages and ice cream, for example.
- Vegetarian food is often cheaper than meat-based recipes.
- Invite all congregations and church organisations, including children’s groups, to collect recycling items such as cardboard tubes, collage materials, yogurt pots and so on.
- Prepare a priced shopping list of things you regularly need. Invite people to buy something such as paint, glue, aprons and so on.
Useful questions to consider and pray about:
- What does charging or offering Messy Church for free say about God to the families who come?
- How do you think introducing money into Messy Church changes the relationship between the church and the families?
- Would you like families to give in order to cover costs or in order to learn about God and money?
- In an ideal world, how much would you like each family to contribute and why?
- Does your church consider the regular planned giving from the Messy Church team members as part of the giving that comes from Messy Church?