This year has had many changes for The Party. We moved from Wascana School to the Rainbow Youth Centre. We changed from Tuesdays to Mondays. We totally split the teens (Grades 6 and up) from the younger kids. The teens meet at a different location - Zeike's Place. We changed the format somewhat, and we have different helpers and different group leaders. However, we are still able to see the Lord at work each week.
This year we have unstructured games (run the kids ragged so they'll be able to sit and listen a bit) from 6 to 6:30. Then the teens get driven over to Zeike's place. At about 6:40 we have circle time until about 7. Then we have three groups or centres that we rotate through: story time, snack time and activity time. Last week I did the circle time. The kids were amazingly well behaved. When I said it was circle time, they all came and sat down - participated in the singing, and listened.
This week was a little more normal. It took a little more coercion to get everyone to participate, and it was a little more hairy at the various centres. We had 33 kids in our group and about 15 or so in the teens group.
Last year I was the snack lady, and I did attendance. This year I still do attendance, but I'm also doing the circle time more often (I don't have the male carrying voice - so I'm fine if someone else does it), as well as more of the crowd control, making sure the groups rotate on time, etc. However one of the blessings of The Party is that there are so many people who work together to ensure that it happens.
We have regular drivers, who pick up the kids (15 passenger van load at a time) - thank you Dennis, Kirk and Lisa. We have our regular snack providers - Margaret made soup and bannock this week; which was excellent. Marina and Melissa made cookies last week. We have the regular teen helpers from Western and QCC. Thank you, Caleb, Daryl, Camden, Bram, Leo, Thomas, Naomi, Joanne, Vivian and Jane. (We missed three of the girls tonight, but they are regular helpers). Thanks to the many people from Northwest congregation who also help regularly: Rene, Marina, Debbie, Ruth, Melissa, and the other Daryl.
I think the changes have been good changes. We have more space for the kids and we're reaching more kids and their families. I can see how we're making a difference in lives. It feels good.