The following is provided for planning consideration in preparation of an OCF Spiritually Smart Spouse or Family conference. Host responsibilities and considerations:
- Commit the conference to prayer
- Secure Facilities
- Determine and arrange for child care needs
- Publicize to target audience
- Decide on registration procedure and materials
- Reproduce, assemble and distribute conference materials
- Arrange financing for the conference, travel, and lodging of speakers
Local Leadership Conference Planning Team
- Event coordinator: Work closely with the OCF Outreach Staff Representative to oversee and coordinate the conference.
- Publicity leader: Work with the chapel staff and organizations (OCF, PWOC, PMOC, local churches, etc.), base paper, wives clubs, family support groups, and others to get the word out.
- Conference Prayer Team leader: Develop a prayer team and pray about every aspect, planning, execution and the results. The conference will not succeed and effectively minister to needs without prayer.
- Registration: Receive registrations, assemble/distribute materials to attendees, and provide nametags.
- Children: Arrange for childcare or children’s program, and register children.
- Refreshments: Procure refreshments as appropriate.
Financing the Conference
Our primary concern is to help families encountering military deployment to thrive spiritually and to reunite stronger than ever. It costs OCF $1,200 to $1,500 to present a conference (including travel, lodging, and materials).
We ask that hosting installations contribute to help defray our cost and to help make it possible to continue this outreach.
- Food for participants
- Other incidental costs
NOTE: Any contributions should be made payable to OCF and designated for the Family Outreach ministry.
Groups may fund conferences in several ways:
- Post/Base appropriated funds
- Chaplain’s funds
- Locally provided private funds
OCF is willing to financially assist in travel and lodging if installation cannot afford such expense.
Conference funding alternatives
- Volunteers for childcare requirements
- Host the speaking team in private homes rather than hotels or base lodging
- Food donations from local businesses
Countdown to Conference
Prayer: Cover the entire conference with prayer from beginning to end!
2-3 months prior (or earlier)
- Meet with installation chaplain and garner support.
- Determine available funding.
- Identify principle installation point of contact for the conference.
- Identify local OCF leader as point of contact for OCF Family Outreach representative coordination.
- Establish conference date with OCF Family Outreach representative.
- Schedule conference facility.
- Select contact person for interested attendees. Provide name and contact information to OCF Family Outreach representative for publication in Command magazine, OCF web site, etc.
6 weeks prior
- Coordinate travel arrangements with speakers.
- Finalize topics and conference format with team.
- Determine meal/refreshment plan.
- Design publicity materials:
Bulletin inserts and announcements
Email Press release
2 – 4 weeks prior
- Determine support requirements for speakers: projector, computer, sound system, podium, etc.
- Continue publicity: Chapels Area OCF Bible studies and other Christian groups Protestant Women of the Chapel (PWOC) All military units Family support groups
- Finalize childcare plans.
- Identify lodging arrangements.
1 – 2 weeks prior
- Focus on publicity, especially personal invitations.
- Encourage registration
- Prepare handout materials for reproduction.
- Confirm facilities arrangement and layout
- Reproduce and assemble handouts
- Gather registration material
- Prepare nametags for those registered
- Purchase refreshments
Immediately after the conference
Each attendee goes home with personal follow-up materials: book, pamphlet, suggested study plan, Scripture focus cards or assignment sheet.
Within one week after the conference
- Follow up with offered Bible studies, PWOC meeting invitations, one-on-one mentoring as needed.
- Send conference article/short summary to OCF Family Outreach representative and include photographs.
We also track good books on the family. Have a recommendation for the OCF Spouse Spiritually Smart reading list? Send it to us.
A Lasting Promise: A Christian Guide to Fighting for Your Marriage. Scott Stanley, Daniel Trathen, Savanna McCain, and Milt Bryan; Jossey-Bass, 2002.
Connecting: Healing for Ourselves and Our Relationships. Larry Crabb, Thomas Nelson, 1997.
Family: The Forming Center, A Vision of the Role of Family in Spiritual Formation. Marjorie J. Thompson, Upper Room Books, 1996.
Peacemaking for Families: A Biblical Guide to Managing Conflict in Your Home. Ken Sande, a Focus on the Family book, Tyndale House, 2002.
The Family: A Christian Perspective on the Contemporary Home. Jack & Judith Balswick, Baker Academic, 1999.
The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. John M. Gottman and Nan Silver, Three Rivers Press, 1999.