Everyone loves to be appreciated. Unfortunately in churches, children’s ministry volunteers can become under-valued and taken for granted. As leaders in children’s ministry, we must make it a priority to show volunteers that we genuinely care for them and that they do a fantastic job. Here are 4 easy ways that you can do just that.
1. Regularly ask if there is anything you can do for them.
Volunteers need to know that they don’t “work for you,” but that everyone is a team working together for the cause of Christ. You are there to help them succeed and minister to children and they need to see that in action. Try to regularly talk with your volunteers and ask them if there is anything you can do for them. Making sure they have all the help and resources that they need and that all their questions are answered will reduce the stress and pressure that your leaders may have. It will also help them to lead more effectively.
2. Show a concern for their personal lives.
Your volunteers have lives apart from the children’s ministry. Showing an interest in their families, hobbies, and activities will demonstrate that you care about them as more than a volunteer. If all you ever discuss is children’s ministry, your volunteers will eventually feel as if you only care about them assisting in the ministry. As the body of Christ, we are called to minister to each others needs and be involved with one another relationally.
3. Compliment and thank them.
Who doesn’t like hearing a compliment? Making a habit of complimenting your volunteers will boost morale and help kindle their desires and passions for children’s ministry. One great way of complimenting a volunteer is to talk to a child as soon as they leave his or her classroom. Ask him or her something like, “What do you like best about your teacher?” When you get an answer, go straight to the teacher and say, “You’ll never guess what I just heard a child say…” Follow that up by thanking that teacher for what he or she does. Cards, letters, and small tokens of appreciation can also go a long way in saying thanks. Your volunteers can never hear it enough!
4. Give them some time off.
Everyone needs a little time away. When your volunteers ask for a few weeks off to spend time with family or to go on a vacation, don’t make them feel guilty. In fact, if someone is working all the time without a break, a week or two off may be something you should suggest. One great way I have found in allowing for my volunteers to have this “time off” from teaching, but still be involved in the children’s ministry that particular week, is for myself to volunteer to teach different classes each week. Not only will your volunteers appreciate this break, but it will also allows me to connect with the children on a more personal level.
Have you thought of other ways to you show volunteers that you care? What was the response from them? Leave your thoughts and comments in the comment section!