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Recruiting Volunteers with a Taco

Recruiting Volunteers with a Taco

Volunteers are the engine of all our ministries. There are obvious practical reasons for this since there is just no way we are getting everything done without having others around us share the work. It also has biblical roots since Ephesians 4 tells us that we have been appointed as leaders to equip the church for the work of the ministry.

Because of these practical and biblical underpinnings, we’re committed to recruiting and training up volunteers who thrive. It’s important to have a process in place to make sure our volunteers know what they are supposed to be doing and how to do it.

At our church, we have a simple four-step process that someone goes through once they show interest in volunteering.

1. Test Drive

The first thing we ask potential volunteers to do is “Test Drive” our student ministry. This means that they can come and just check things out, no string attached. We want to make sure that someone who joins our volunteer team actually wants to be in student ministry. So this is their way out if they don’t really jive with students. Once the Test Drive is over, we simply ask them what they thought and if they could see themselves involved in student ministry. If they say it isn’t a fit we celebrate that and try to point them to another ministry area they may fit better in. If they say that they do want to get involved, we move them to step two.

2. Application

We have every potential leader fill out an application. This does two things for us that are huge. First, it weeds out the ones who really aren’t that serious. If someone is willing to take 15-20 minutes and fill out an application they already have a time investment into the ministry and means they are probably serious about getting involved. If they never turn their application in, we probably didn’t want them in the first place. The second thing it does for us is that it gives us permission to run our criminal background check. At the end of the application, they have to sign off to give us permission to run the check. We run a Megan’s Law check (free online) on every person applying and we run a Criminal Background Check ($9.00) as well. Protecting our students is imperative for us. If you aren’t doing this, you need to stop reading this NOW and go figure out how to get it done.

3. Conversation

Once the potential volunteer has filled out their application and we receive it we’ll have a follow up conversation with them. The intent is to go even deeper into who they are, what their intentions are, make sure they completely understand the job description of a leader, and what Jesus is doing in their life. This conversation is really a final gate-keeping initiative. In this conversation we end up letting them know if they can move forward or, for some, that this probably isn’t going to be a fit for one reason or another.

4. Orientation

The last step in the process is having the potential volunteer go through our New Leader Orientation. At this orientation, we try and give them every single detail they need in order to be set up to be an incredible student ministry leader. This includes going over the larger mission and vision of our student ministry, as well as details like times to show up, important dates through the year, and practical tips on leading students well.

Our hope is that by the end of this simple process, the stage is set to have great volunteer leaders inspired and informed as to how to best lead students towards becoming more fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ!

Jason Mitchell
Campus Pastor at LCBC Church
Jason is a Campus Pastor at LCBC Church (Lives Changed By Christ). He loves taking runs, drinking coffee, listening to all things rock and roll, and spending time with his wife Jenny and their two kids, Sienna and Silas.