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Volunteers: A Four Letter Word?!?!?!? – Follow-up

One of the finest ways to keep volunteers is to appreciate them.  We all like to be and feel appreciated, don’t we?

Please feel free to share some ways you show volunteers you appreciate them.

I am including Weekly Appreciation Checklist developed by Dema Kohem to help you to keep up with the ways you communicate appreciation.  You have permission to copy and make it your own.


Volunteers!!! A Four Letter Word?

by Cathy Hopkins

As I read post after post from church leaders, and especially preschool and children’s ministry leaders from across the United States, I notice a common thread in a large percentage of their laments- VOLUNTEERS!!!

Leaders are asking:

  • How do we find volunteers?
  • How do we keep volunteers?
  • When and how do we train volunteers?
  • What do we do when the volunteer drops out at the last minute?
  • And even this one- Volunteers- *^&**# (that 4 letter word)

There are an equal amount of posts and articles to answer all those questions.  Here’s my takeaway…..

Webster states that a volunteer is a person who voluntarily undertakes or expresses a willingness to undertake a service.  In church, we think of volunteers as people who work alongside others towards a common goal.  Effective ministry needs the service of volunteers!

Volunteers need to know they are needed and why they are needed.  They need purpose and training and supervision!  They need to know and feel they are supported and they need to be given adequate tools to do their jobs.

Volunteers need to know you care about them and that you trust their service. They need private and public appreciation.

Even with all of these needs fulfilled, they serve best when they have a good relationship with the church leader to whom they committed their volunteer service.  The volunteer feels a higher level of commitment, thus less absenteeism, drop outs, no shows and less frustration.

Maintaining a prayerful attitude is vital in enlisting and maintaining a healthy cadre of volunteers. God will provide a solution to volunteer challenges and headaches, without you being baffled and upset. Trust Him!!

My prayer is that you will always stay in the recruiting mode; be patient, very patient; and rely on God to move in the lives of people to have the desire to serve others and then show them a way to live out that call from God.

These thoughts above are from Cathy Hopkins, one of our partners in the ministry based out of Fayetteville, North Carolina. Her primary focus is working alongside churches in children and family matters. For more information about how she can help you, contact her at 919.612.1085 or

From the Very Beginning……

From infancy, babies learn trust. When a baby cries, they are soothed; when they are hungry, someone makes sure they are fed; when a baby has a wet diaper, their diaper is changed and they are made comfortable again. When children are left with competent, loving leaders for a period of time, they learn their parents will return to them. TRUST is vital on our spiritual journey. How will a child ever trust Jesus as their Savior if they are denied opportunities of learning to trust?

Preschoolers trust people at church to meet their needs. At this young age, they are learning that people at church love them and in turn, preschoolers are forming their attitudes about church, God, Jesus and others. Providing loving, trained and prepared teachers at church helps children and their parents feel happy and secure.

What are some ways your church is assisting parents in teaching trust to little children? How are you helping children form their attitudes about church? God? Jesus? others?

Cathy Hopkins, one of our partners, is based in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Her primary focus is working alongside churches in children and family matters. For more information about how she can help you, contact her at 919.612.1085 or .