It’s important to be able to project your expenses in the short term and long term in order to effectively plan for manageable growth. At the end of this section, we’ve attached a template of a “Year-long Budget” which will help project your income and expenses before the financial year kicks over. It will enable you to plan 12 months in advance which is highly beneficial.
How it works:
Project your income & expenses each month based on how many weeks your program will run for. There are Youth Ministries that normally close during the Christmas holidays and as such offerings in December and January decrease as most 12-15-year-olds don’t give online yet. Taking this into consideration it is important to adjust income & expenses in those months to reflect this.
An effective method of accounting for this in your budget is to project a lower income, and a higher expenditure during this time, providing a buffer that allows no surprises of an expensive bill or a low offering. By doing this you have the flexibility to cover additional expenses during the year without having your budget spread so thin that it results in financial restrictions.
BUT I HAVE NO ALLOCATED BUDGET, SHOULD I STILL DO A YEAR LONG BUDGET PROJECTION?
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
If you want your youth ministry to grow and develop, then plan for the growth that you are believing to see. It isn’t necessary for the church to provide your finances to run an effective program. Instead through creativity & fundraising, you can still set yourself up for financial success. See our “Increase your ministries income” post for more ideas if you do not currently have an allocated budget.