In children’s ministry we’re always looking to appreciate volunteers. Why? Because we need a ton of them, so we want the ones we have to stay! Thankfully, volunteer appreciation doesn’t need to be elaborate. After all, your main goal isn’t to blow away your leaders (at least, not all the time). It’s to remind them that you notice and appreciate their contribution.
For Valentines day, we did a little thank you that worked out well. We bought a bunch of Russell Stover valentine’s chocolate bars, made a note that said how much we appreciated them, and tied them together with ribbon. Total cost – about $1 per volunteer, but they loved them! They appreciated our stab at creativity, and they loved being reminded that we were thankful for their service.
We’re trying another idea, but this one didn’t come from us, it came from Yorba Linda Friends Church. One question I asked them was how they got enough of their volunteers together for training. Their solution had been to fill their classrooms with substitutes for a Sunday, and hold a leader training/appreciation meeting during their leader’s normal hour of serving. That way they weren’t adding anything to their leaders’ calendar. We loved the idea, so we’re trying it out on March 30th. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Keep thinking of great ways to thank, equip, and invite leaders. When something works, don’t forget to pass it on!