The Volunteer Dilemma

April 2, 2014

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Most churches have an on-going dilemma with volunteers. Volunteers are essential to the life of any ministry. At Eastside we have 213 volunteers with a need for at least 63 more volunteers. How does a church recruit, motivate, and leverage volunteers to accomplish the vision and mission of a local church? Eastside has worked through this dilemma over the last year and has made great strides in this arena. Here are some of our learnings:

“Key Messages” we want each volunteer to hear each time they serve at Eastside:

  • What you do matters, “Thank you for serving!”
  • Keep growing and moving on to being a fully surrendered disciple of Jesus

“Key Experiences” we want each volunteer to experience each time they serve at Eastside:

  • Serve as a team
  • Motivation for serving is a Christ-centered heart
  • Feel fulfillment and purpose while serving
  • Serve others and with others while having fun

What Every Volunteer Deserves: 

  • To serve with JOY
  • To serve with a team
  • To have a leader to shepherd them toward being a fully surrendered disciples of Jesus
  • To serve on a 3 week rotation
  • To have a leader who has time for them as they serve together

What Every Team Leader Should Provide:

  • Make one phone call per day to his or her team members. The span of care should be 5 members for every team leader (1:5 ratio)
  • Shepherd his or her team members to being fully surrendered disciples of Jesus
  • Time for each volunteer as they serve together
  • Provide training and communication

What would you add? How do you recruit, motivate, and leverage volunteers in your organization?

I would love to hear your feedback!

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