We love all kids – all sizes, all ages, and with all challenges! We support parents and special needs children to become followers of Jesus and live lives that honor Him. Children are paired with “buddies” who have been trained in working with special needs children during the Saturday at 6:30 PM and Sunday at 9:00 AM worship gatherings. Prior evaluations are required to place a child in our Special Needs program.
We also have a monthly event called “Kids Klub” where we provide appropriate care and fun activities for the kids, while parents enjoy a much needed break. Check out the Kids Klub page for dates and times.
Sidekick Alley – At Lakeside Church, we love children, period! For families that have children who would benefit from the love and nurturing of a one on one adult, we invite you to check out Sidekick Alley. Specially trained loving volunteers become pals who accompany children with special needs to age appropriate Kidsfest classes in order to make sure each individual child’s needs are met. Additionally, we offer Kids Klub which offers respite care the first Friday evening of the month for children with special needs and their siblings.
What is Special Needs Ministry?
Parents know their child best and will be able to give input as to what type of environment is best for their child. Our special needs ministry provides special assistance for children to integrate into the classroom. In general this ministry: provides a Christian environment for handicapped or medically fragile children to allow parents and families to attend church together; screens for the appropriate placement for a child in the classroom; trains for 1:1 middle school, high school, or adult aids for the child in order for them to be able to integrate into a classroom successfully.
Our Vision for the Special Needs Ministry
Special Needs staff will spend time with the child, train an aide if needed, and support the child, aide and classroom teacher.
Special Needs room will be staffed on Saturday at 6:30 pm and Sunday at 9:00 am for any child on the special needs roster who is having a difficult day and needs a break from the classroom setting.
Special Needs staff will assist a teacher with suggestions to help any other difficult children who may not be on our special needs roster. We will make family contact if the teacher deems it necessary, and will explain our ministry to the family to see if we can help.
We can assist any developmentally or medically fragile child, but we are not prepared to deal with behavioral or mental health issues.
What does Special Needs provide?
We prepare a child before going to the classroom if needed.
We play, but in a therapeutic way.
We offer various sensory experiences for the child during gatherings (swings, balls, tactile, music, vestibular, proprioceptive…)
We will attempt to follow any plan a family communicates to us.
For children who are able, we can offer an appropriate Bible message, craft, etc.
What doesn’t Special Needs provide?
Behavioral modification programs
Medical intervention (except for emergency intervention)
Our program does not operate during the Saturday at 4:30 pm and Sunday at 11:00 am gatherings
What do teachers do when they have a Special Needs issue or have a family who has a possible candidate for the Special Needs program?
Explain our ministry to the parents and provide the coordinator’s contact information.
Call our special needs coordinator directly for initial contact to come and spend time in our classroom, for assistance, and/or helpful tips.
Pray for the ministry.