Thank you so much for taking on the role of Word Alive Student Champion for your CU.
You play an important role in advertising the event and encouraging your CU to come along. We can’t wait to see how God uses Word Alive to transform your CU. Thank you for being part of it!
Here’s some practical information to help you advertise the event.
Student bookings launch at Forum. Chat to your Staff Worker about your strategy for booking chalets and getting your fellow students to sign up.
You can book a standard, 4 berth, self-catered apartment for £560, that works out at £140 per person. This includes your accommodation and your event pass for the week (which means you can access the programme!)
Staying off site? Your event passes go on sale at this point.
Talk to your staff worker to let them know that you are planning to book off site accommodation. You can book an event pass right up until the start of the event but the sooner the better!
This is the time to start encouraging people to sign up for Word Alive. If there’s enough interest at this stage, you can book the chalets you think you’ll need.
If your CU might need more time, here are some suggestions and tips for raising awareness:
Tell them that you would like to organise a group to go to Word Alive and arrange a time for giving a notice at a CU meeting or on a weekend away to encourage people to come.
Often the key recruitment to Word Alive is the launch, held in a CU meeting or on a weekend away. Some good things to consider are:
Ask people to register their interest and consider next steps. Perhaps you can create a Facebook of Whatsapp group and run a follow-up meeting with more detail. Make sure you are clear about the details of the event: where it is, when it is, how much it costs, and the deposit they need to pay to secure their place.
The on site units tend to get booked quite quickly so you may want to book a few units even if you haven’t confirmed who is coming (you’ll only need the group booker’s name to make the booking i.e. yours!). But be careful not to book too many! You’ll need to pay a £100 non-refundable deposit per chalet (£25/per person).
To book: go to the Word Alive website (wordaliveevent.org) and click on the ‘Book Now’ link.
You’ll need to:
Top Tip: If you are making a large booking, consider booking some units on the ground floor and some on the upper floor so that you can be in the same block.
If your CU is staying off site, you’ll need to book your own accommodation and event passes. Word Alive has put together an information pack with ideas and suggestions for making off site work for you.
The balance is due for on site bookings by 26 January. This means the full payment for chalets needs to be received by Word Alive by this date.
Make sure those who’ve signed up to come to Word Alive pay you the final balance for their place in the chalet. Don’t take on the financial responsibility for the chalet yourself.
You’ll also need to complete the booking details by adding occupancy names and email addresses of those in your group before making final payment. These can be amended up until the event.
If you have spots to fill in your CU chalets and you can’t find anyone else from your CU who wants to/can come, try getting in touch with another CU in your region to see if their chalets are oversubscribed and they could fill some of your spaces.
If you are really concerned about filling a chalet, do get in touch with your Staff Worker early on in the month to discuss options and strategy.
Top Tip 1: Aim for 19 January, that way if anything goes wrong or you need to find someone to fill a chalet due to a last-minute drop out, you aren’t scrambling on the final day.
Top Tip 2: You can encourage the person dropping out to do the initial search in the CU for someone to take their place – they’ll have the financial incentive to find someone.
Top Tip 3: If you have an uneven number of boys and girls signed up, talk to your Staff Worker to see if other CUs in your region might be able to help you even out your numbers, so that you can stick to single sex chalets.
Top tip for this section: spread these tasks out, so that they don’t all come at once. Remember it will be easier to gather info while people are around at uni, than after term has finished.
Start organising travel from the end of January. Word Alive may seem quite a long time away but if anyone is coming by train and would like to book cheaper train tickets this is when to start booking. You can sometimes find cheaper train tickets when searching for split-ticketing options.
Send out more detailed instructions about what time people need to arrive, along with directions. Ask people to let you know if they will be coming (and where from) by car or train and if they would be able to offer others lifts (Google Forms can be a handy way of capturing this information).
There may be someone in your CU who is super organised and happy to help with the travel logistics – do ask for help with this if you need it.
Start planning your meals and shopping lists. Start with a budget for food and work from there. Break it down for each meal and add some extra money in for snacks. Ask those coming to pay in advance for the food; you can then do an online order for the first day or go to one of the local supermarkets yourself, if you have cars in your group.
Don’t forget to ask for people’s dietary requirements. Getting these and planning early will make it much easier to find recipes that will work for your group.
As the event gets closer you can help your group by passing on information about travel, what to bring, programme updates etc. See the Word Alive website for useful information; you can also follow Word Alive on social media for regular updates. If you give Word Alive the details of everyone in your chalet (under booking details), then everybody will get the final information email that is sent before the event, so that will take the pressure off you to communicate everything!
Start first with seeing if there’s anyone else in your CU who would like to come or could be persuaded to come. If that isn’t successful, then you can open it up to other local CUs or a bit wider within your region. If you’re really struggling, then get in touch with your Staff Worker who may have heard of other regions that need spaces.
You’ll need to collect your chalet keys in the Fun Factory from 4pm. Late arrivals will need to check-in at Pontins Reception. The keys will be listed under the name of the university, but you also need to know the name of the person who made the booking. You’ll get all the keys of the chalets in your booking at once, so do make sure to swap numbers and communicate about arrival times and who is doing the check-in and distributing keys to avoid any confusion on arrival day.
You can collect your event passes from Word Alive Information at the Pontins Reception from 4pm. You’ll also receive a hot drink voucher which gives you one free drink per day from the Word Alive Café in the HUB. You may want to check-in to your off site accommodation first and then come on site for the evening celebration.
Some student champions set up a rota which covers things like people cooking meals and arranging outings. You could do this or delegate different tasks.
There will be a student champions meeting in the UCCF marquee one lunchtime (we’ll feed you too). Do come along to meet other Student Champions and the Word Alive organisers. We’d love you to share your feedback and ideas from your experience. Bring along your successor if you’ll be passing on the role of Student Champion to someone else in your CU.
This guide has been produced in partnership by UCCF and Word Alive.
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