Child care offered at General Synod 2013
Written by Connie Larkman
May 2, 2013

Children of all ages are welcome at the United Church of Christ General Synod in Long Beach, Calif., June 28 - July 2, with on-site child care offered at a low cost during all scheduled business sessions and worship services.

"The General Synod Program and Planning Committee heard loud and clear the need for affordable, high quality child care," said UCC Synod Administrator W. Mark Clark. "We expect to have delegates and visitors with young children, so this has been a high priority for us."

Registration for babies 0-3 years, and children ages 4-14 (Pre-K through 8th grade) is now being taken, with a deadline of June 1, 2013. The Local Arrangements Committee is also planning field trips for the older kids. While a complete schedule is still in the planning stages, the group hopes to offer offsite field trips to the Aquarium of the Pacific, Rancho Los Alamitos, and the Queen Mary. Please note that outings may be subject to change due to local availability.

"It is important for us to extend an extravagant welcome to all who come to General Synod in Long Beach, including our youngest guests and their parents," said the Rev. Susan Bjork, associate minister
of Bay Shore Church UCC and the co-chair of the child care subcommittee. "We are excited to offer a safe, welcoming, and fun environment for kids who are coming to Synod from near and far. We love Synod and want this week to be as fun and interesting for kids as it is for adults."

The child care sessions, which begin with the first business session Friday afternoon and continue through worship Tuesday evening, will offer games, crafts, music, stories and snacks. Each session costs $5 per child, with the daily maximum being $15.

"The generosity of the people of Pilgrim Place has made it possible to provide a very affordable children's program at Synod this year. The people of Pilgrim Place know that these kids are both important members of our current communities of faith and that they are also the future of the UCC," said Bjork.

"The Local Arrangements Committee child care subcommittee has done a great job with availability, programing and fees. They were very intentional about keeping the costs as low as possible," Clark said. All staff and volunteers have been screened in compliance with the Southern California Nevada Conference Safe Church Policy, with volunteers being clergy and lay people from churches across the Conference.

Each child care session will open 15 minutes prior to scheduled business sessions/worship services and will close 15 minutes after. Parents are expected to drop off and pick up their children within these times.  While parents will be feeding their children during lunch and dinner recesses, this program will provide snacks and beverages for those being cared for.

A detailed schedule (including full field trip information and staff contact information for those participating in the offsite components of the children's program) will be sent to participating parents when it becomes available and upon receipt of the child's registration form and payment.

To register your child/children, go to http://www.ucc.org/synod/child-care-childrens.html. Fill out a children's program registration form, enclose a check, and mail it to the address provided on the form.  Registration deadline is June 1, 2013, and all children must be registered by this date. In order to ensure proper staff to child ratios, drop in care will not be available.

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CONTACT INFO

Ms. Connie N. Larkman
Managing Editor & News Director
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland,Ohio 44115
216-736-2196
larkmanc@ucc.org