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Nurturing & Supporting Religious Education Volunteers. Presented by Patricia Infante, Regional Faith Development Consultant, CERG Jan Gartner, Lifespan Faith Development & Youth Ministries Consultant, OMD. Webinar Basics . Top Menu Bar: Emoticons Message Box Right side of screen:

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nurturing supporting religious education volunteers

Nurturing & Supporting Religious Education Volunteers

Presented by

Patricia Infante, Regional Faith Development Consultant, CERG

Jan Gartner, Lifespan Faith Development & Youth Ministries Consultant, OMD

webinar basics
Webinar Basics
  • Top Menu Bar:
    • Emoticons
    • Message Box
  • Right side of screen:
    • Attendees
    • Message Box
lighting our virtual chalice
Lighting Our Virtual Chalice

Let nothing dim the light that shines from within.

~Maya Angelou

introductions
Introductions
  • Please introduce yourself by sharing the following:
    • Your Name
    • Congregation Name
    • Your role/job in the congregation
    • Approximate Congregation Size & RE Enrollment
overview
Overview
  • Recruiting Volunteers for your Program
  • Orienting & Equipping Volunteers
  • Communication
  • Ways to Support Volunteers
  • Keeping Volunteers Motivated
  • Appreciation & Recognition
why do people volunteer
Why do people volunteer?
  • relationship to the person who asked
  • feel honored/respected/flattered to have been asked
  • love for the institution/giving something back
  • desire to put faith into action
  • to connect with others
  • desire to accomplish a goal
  • recognition and feedback
  • personal growth
  • sense of duty

Special Challenges:

  • the oxymoron of “obligatory volunteerism”
  • The polarity of call versus duty
recruit
Recruit

Explain the role:

  • Big picture:
    • How is this role/task a ministry?
    • Why is it important?
    • How does it strengthen congregational life and/or deepen kids/families\' connections to the congregation?
    • How does it complement and/or simplify the work of others?
  • Specifics:
    • Time commitment
    • Scope
    • Expectations
orient
Orient

Formal and/or informal orientation

Foster competence and confidence

Clarify the role

  • Remind volunteers of the big picture
  • Specifics:
    • How-to’s
    • FAQ’s
    • Parameters
    • What can volunteers expect from you?
support
Support

Communicate

  • Stay connected
    • weekly email to teachers
    • mid-year check-ins
    • your ideas?
  • Provide relevant info
    • Church happenings, important reminders
  • Remind volunteers of the role of staff/program leaders
    • Providing supplies, finding subs....what do you do?
  • Two-way communication
    • Encourage volunteers to contact you – when/how to do so
    • Request honest, constructive feedback
support1
Support

Nurture

  • tips, how-to’s
  • fun or inspirational quotes,

song lyrics as part of communications

  • pastoral support
  • provide a mentor
  • help transition out when ready
  • your ideas?
customize your support
Customize your support

Find the right balance of

  • directing
  • hand-holding
  • empowering

for each volunteer.

volunteer appreciation recognition
Volunteer Appreciation & Recognition
  • Ritual Recognition
    • Volunteer Dedication
    • Volunteer Appreciation
  • Ongoing
  • Two Way Communication
  • Team Meetings
keep congregation informed involved in recognition
Keep Congregation Informed & Involved in Recognition
  • Thank volunteers by name in your newsletter. Early & Often!
  • Display teacher/volunteer photos & bios
  • Create bulletin board space for classroom photos, teacher affirmations.
  • Different color nametag
keep volunteers connected to the larger community
Keep Volunteers Connected to the Larger Community
  • Make sure they know how to obtain copies or podcasts of sermons.
  • Leave a copy of the weekly order of service in each classroom.
  • Provide a book for recording Joys & Concerns
  • Arrange for Sunday’s Off
  • Ask Minister to write letter of thanks
end of the year recognition
End of the Year Recognition

The manner of giving is worth more than the gift.

~ Pierre Corneille

gift ideas
Gift Ideas
  • Small gift such as a book, a pin, a plant
  • Handmade cards or gifts from children
  • Equal Exchange Chocolate
  • Handmade Chalice
  • Class Photo
  • Uni-Uniques
evaluation of volunteer service
Evaluation of Volunteer Service
  • On-going and End of Year
  • Self – Evaluation
    • What worked well for you?
    • What skills do you need to develop further?
    • Did you enjoy your volunteer task?
    • What advice would you offer to the next person who fills this role?
  • Team/Program Feedback
  • Firing a Volunteer
what if a volunteer quits
What If a Volunteer Quits?
  • Is the job too big?
    • Divide it up
    • Ask two people to share responsibility
  • Is the job necessary?
    • Just because you used to do it, doesn’t mean it is necessary now
  • Is it something you should pay someone to do?
resources
Resources
  • R.E. Road Map: An Administrative Guidebook for Religious Educators; get order form from Cindy Leitner, [email protected]
  • www.uuintergenerational.org for Scripts
  • www.posiitivepromotions.com for Motivational Pins & Gifts
  • Reach-L Archives
closing thought
Closing Thought

If we all tried to make other people’s paths easy,

Our own feet would have a smooth even place to walk on.

  • ~ Myrtle Reed
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