celebrating and thanking volunteers regularly

Shannon Whaples (Next Generation Pastor @ 12Stone Church) had a volunteer appreciation event called “Ovations” on the second night we were in Atlanta (Friday: 7-7:3o coffee and cupcakes, 7:3o-8:15 celebrate spotlighted volunteers at each campus [with awards and gift certificates], 8:15-9:oo comedian). It was a simple way to celebrate and thank their many volunteers that serve in the areas of nursery, preschool, children and youth.

Chad and Autumn Ward (Next Generation Pastor @ Watermarke Church and writer of reThink curriculum, respectively), commented on doing 3 rhythmic volunteer things (they probably have a better reference to it than: things!):

  1. a vision casting event/connection with your volunteers in the fall (i.e. August)
  2. a refresher in January (middle of the winter) to keep them going (encouragement and endurance)
  3. a celebration in May (to thank and celebrate and share stories of what was accomplished)

I think that is something we need to build into our calendar/rhythm. Perhaps it would be fruitful to combine some of these (not all) across the board with youth and children’s ministries. Maybe the celebration at the end should be together. Maybe the refresher in January could be together but broken out into separate “breakouts” at the end or beginning. Maybe the beginning vision-casting should be done as individual ministries.