Kin Blog

How to Plan a Club Retreat

February 12, 2018
By Lisa Maggrah

Is a retreat the answer for your club?

  • Is your club going through membership changes?
  • Are you finding yourselves without a clear direction? 
  • Do you want more out of your club? 
  • Are members feeling burned out? 
  • Do members have skills that aren’t being utilized?
  • Do you like to have fun?
  • Do you want your club members to strive to be the best version of themselves?

If you answer "yes" to any of the questions above, a retreat may benefit you and your club. 

Structuring a retreat

Over the last few years, the Kinette Club of Medicine Hat (like many other clubs) has experienced changes to its dynamics. We felt that we needed to set some goals, establish a unified direction, and really get to know each other and the talents and skills that each member brings. 

Regular club meetings are important for business, planning, and assigning tasks to members as part of Serving the Community’s Greatest Need. However, it can be difficult to really focus on the needs of the club and to evaluate how to give the best experience to every member based on their unique needs.  

Because we answered yes to all of the above questions we decided to make a plan and the Kinette Club of Medicine Hat Retreat was born. We have now participated in a retreat twice, each time looking a little different based on the club's needs at the time.

A retreat can focus on many different areas depending on your clubs needs.  Some of the topics that might be of interest include:

  • Mentorship
  • Leadership
  • Club direction
  • Members skills and talents
  • Public speaking
  • Club positions and descriptions
  • By-laws

Though the desired outcome was different for each retreat, there were some consistencies that helped lead us to success. Depending on your club’s needs, time availability and desired outcomes, a retreat will look a bit different for every one. However, there are some key things that our club found important that may help you.

Tips for success

  • Define the purpose/goals of the retreat 
  • Dedicate a weekend away from the distractions of life
  • Select a location that lends itself to connection (group camps work really well)
  • Prepare an agenda that includes team building activities, fun, and goal focussed education
  • Plan fellowship and fun for the evening (avoid separation and seclusion)

The biggest challenge is building an agenda that flows well and covers everything your club would like to discuss. Brainstorming ideas with fellow Kin can make it much easier. It also gives members an opportunity to voice what they feel is important to include in the retreat. 

Of course, there are other details such as meals and transportation that you sure don’t want to forget but I believe in your ability to figure it out. People get really cranky when you forget to feed them!

Retreats are an easy and fun way to enjoy fellowship with Kin while having focused discussions about the future of your club. The Kinette Club of Medicine Hat would be happy to help you with planning in any way that we can.

Happy retreating! 



The Kinette Club of Medicine Hat at their 2017 club retreat. From left, Daina Sehn, Lisa Maggrah, Tracey Wilson, Jordyn Buchynski, Rachelle Lepine, Teri Dousselaere, and Kallie Bauck (front).

About the Author 

Lisa Maggrah is a "Kinette through to [her] bones" and has been a proud member of Kin Canada for 10 years. She has enjoyed 6 of those years with the Kinette Club of Medicine Hat and can't imagine a life without Kin. She enjoys laughing at her own jokes and taking long walks off short piers. She strives to be her best and aims to empower others to be their best too. Lisa is the current District 4 Kinette Governor.


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