Recruiting and keeping volunteers is crucial to running a church. One of the best ways to do this is to create a clear volunteer vision.
This vision is what shows volunteers the purpose of volunteering and what the church hopes to accomplish. It also provides values to live up to.
It takes time to create the right type of vision. Think of this as part of your church culture.
1. Create A Clear Purpose
No volunteer vision is complete with a clear purpose. Is volunteering about bringing together the community? Helping a set number of people? Are you trying to reach the unchurched? Most church members aren’t going to be passionate about volunteering without knowing what the main purpose is supposed to be.
Remember that the purpose may change based on the season or event. For instance, at Christmas, the purpose may simply be to help bring Christmas to as many families as possible. On the other hand, a community dinner’s purpose might be to get the unchurched to visit outside of church hours.
2. Encourage Having Fun
If your volunteer vision seems more like a guilt trip, no one will want to volunteer. No one likes to feel backed into a corner. Instead, make your vision sound friendly and fun. No one’s obligated to volunteer more than they have time for. Instead, it’s all about coming out, making a difference and having fun with fellow church members. Make it clear that volunteering is more fun with more people do it. After all, it’s usually pretty boring and stressful to do it all alone.
3. Tie Volunteering To Church Values
What are your specific church values? Is it to promote love, service and/or positive change in the world? Some people never volunteer because they don’t really see how all those service projects have anything to do with the church and its values. Your volunteer vision should showcase your values and prove to members that volunteering is how to help the church come together and grow.
4. Be The Embodiment Of Your Volunteer Vision
Would you volunteer if the people around you didn’t seem to care or enjoy it? No. Your volunteer vision is all about making your members feel passionate about the cause. If the ones in charge aren’t passionate and eager to get started, no one will want to volunteer or stick with the project.
Leaders can’t just lead by example alone. They have to also lead through communication and vision. Whether isn’t church leaders or volunteer leaders, you must embrace your volunteer vision and ensure others understand it and feel as passionate as you do.
5. State What Your Vision Actually Is
A volunteer vision is an actual statement. Of course, it’s also about service, passion and living God’s word. Creating a memorable statement helps volunteers better connect to the purpose they’re volunteering for. While Smart Church Management focuses on church vision statements, the steps are applicable to creating a volunteer vision statement as well.
The great thing about having an actual statement is it creates a foundation for what your church wants to achieve through volunteering.
6. Show How Volunteering Changes Lives
Finally, your vision should showcase how volunteering changes lives. Volunteering isn’t just about helping others. It also helps change the lives of volunteers. In fact, volunteering has numerous physical and mental health benefits, such as feeling happier and reducing stress. When everyone seems to be busy 24/7, your members want to know that volunteering benefits them too.
Your volunteer vision should show volunteers that their service can help change their own lives in positive ways. It should also showcase how it changes the lives of those they help. Get your point across by finding people who’ve benefitted, such as a previously homeless man that was able to get a job, find a place to live and get his life back on track just because church volunteers helped him.
Things like this are the type of proof your church members need to show that your vision works. After that, they’ll be more eager to volunteer and be a part of making positive changes to themselves and their community.
Want to reach more potential volunteers? Start by posting opportunities and your volunteer vision statement on your church website.
I think it is important to find activities that encourage participation and a connection to others. This way relationships can be fostered and people can grow closer together in the faith. I’ll have to remember your tips if I ever need ideas for a church gathering.
You are so right Jack! Thanks for adding to the discussion. 🙂