One resource that every children’s ministry could use is more volunteers. It is easy to feel like your church is the only church that needs more volunteers or that your leadership ability is the reason you are lacking in this area. However, even churches with a strong volunteer base sometimes have service times when leaders are scrambling to find volunteers so they can keep rooms open.Children’s leaders have a great need for volunteer teams because children’s ministry within the local church:
- Usually has the most service times during the week.
- Oversees the most rooms in the church.
People come and go, and at times life gets crazy, which establishes the need for a surplus of volunteers for any given week. Whether or not you currently have a strong volunteer base, you always need to be recruiting! Consider the following:
- Know what opportunities you have available!
An old mentor of mine used to say, “If I gave you 100 volunteers today, would you know what to do with them?” We all know we need people, but do we know specifically the roles we want them to fill. Create a leadership chart for your ministry to discover the positions for which volunteers are needed. As you speak to people in your church, you will be able to figure out which position could best fit their availability and gifting.
- Make a clear pathway!
- If I attended your church and wanted to work with children, would it be easy for me to do so?
- Would it be obvious where I should sign up?
- Do you have applications printed for interested people to fill out?
- Do you have information on what roles are available?
- Do you have a training process?
- What rules/restrictions/legalities would I need to be aware of to become a children’s worker
Having a clear pathway can lead people through the process and help ease any anxiety or uncertainty they might have.
- Capitalize on one-time events!
I don’t believe that everyone should serve in kid’s ministry. I’m not convinced even all parents should. We want the best people on our team. Events like VBS are great opportunities to get volunteers engaged in the ministry before you ask them to commit to serve long term. You get to see people who are passionate about children and are good at interacting with them. People might serve during a one-time event, and their experience during that event can propel them to desire greater community and commitment to your children’s ministry. Conversely, serving in a one-time children’s event can also reveal to the volunteer as well as the leaders that this person could better serve in some other area of the church.
There are many other factors to consider when recruiting volunteers. However, recruiting more people than you feel you currently need can certainly alleviate the pressure of having to close a room or class because no volunteer is processed, trained, and ready to step into action.