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Christian Retreats Network

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Stretching the Budget

By Paul

We all know that finances can be tight around the holidays! Yet, because we have time off from work and school, it's a great opportunity to hold an event. Plus, there is plenty to celebrate! Here are three practical tips you can use concerning stretching your budget during the holiday season.

The first tip, cut some of the cost by doing a fundraiser beforehand. If you raise funds, then your overall cost level can be much lower. Possible fundraiser ideas are car wash, garage sale, bowl-a-thon and bake sale. Even the members in your group will feel they had something to give to make the event a success.

The second tip, have someone in the church or group help sponsor the event to cut cost way back. People are always willing to give towards a worthy cause or activity. Family members and businesses are a great resource when it comes to sponsors. I heard of a youth group recently that cut their cost in half because of willing sponsors that enjoyed giving. And during this time of year, who wouldn’t be moved to give the life-changing opportunities that happen on a retreat? Talk about creating a Christmas miracle.

The third tip is to plan ahead and include your event in a yearly budget to keep costs low. I know it’s a little late to start that now, but it is great practice for a potential event next year. Having money set aside throughout the year will help ease some of the financial stress of the holidays. With that budgeted money, guests can pay a portion of what it would normally cost, without your organization losing money. Or you could have guests make payments throughout the year (or get it paid early) so that they don’t have to worry about coming up with that money when they are trying to finish up their Christmas shopping. Having the main part of your event budgeted will help boost your attendance. The overall cost to attend will be low and much more affordable.

As you apply one of these three tips it will be a lot easier to plan a successful event during the holidays. Enjoy your event and don't forget to plan ahead and plan wisely. Merry Christmas and have a blessed New Year!

Christian Retreats Network /

Based at Lake Williamson / PO Box 620 / Carlinville, IL 62626