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Guest Post: Setting Your Volunteers Up For Fall Success

children in the fall with leavesFall is a great time of year. School is in session in the US. Children and their families are finishing their summer travels. New people are moving to your area. It is a time of growth for your church, but it can also be a pinch for children’s ministry leaders. More people attending means the need for more volunteers.

When faced with a need for more volunteers, the first thought is to recruit. Before you put effort into recruiting, take a look at how you can expand the volunteer base you have. It may surprise you at the opportunities you find.


Revisit the Frequency Your Volunteers Are Serving

If a volunteer only serves once a month, ask them to serve twice a month. If they serve

twice a month, could they serve weekly? An increase of 50% goes a long way.


Expand the Roles Of Current Volunteers

Look for complementary volunteer roles that one volunteer could fill. Example: Have parents drop kids off in their small group or class area. This way teachers can greet parents or greeters can serve as security during the service.


Create Opportunities For Leaders To Help

Create leadership positions in your ministry. Give seasoned volunteers new roles. Have them recruit, train, and minister to the new volunteers. Allow your leadership to help you can expand the volunteer base in a more organic way.


Ask For Temporary Season of Dedicated Ministry

Ask infrequent volunteers to dedicate a season (3-9 months) of consistent service. Having a definite end point will be encouraging to volunteers. Most like it so much they continue to serve even when the season is over.


How do you do this?

By connecting with these volunteers and asking them. Nothing fancy. You get to know the volunteer and ask why they serve in the pattern they serve. Many will have good reasons. Their spouse serves in another ministry who kept a similar schedule. Or they travel a lot and can only commit to that much. But many would say this is how they always served. No one asked them to do more. Of people serving in 2014, 41% did so because someone in the organization asked them.

Volunteers who already understand your vision will welcome another chance to serve. Sometimes all they need is for you to give them the opportunity.


In the Ministry Accelerator community, we discuss ministry design, best practices, digital tools and volunteers. Join us today. Email [email protected] and put “I want to join” in the subject line.