What could this be, you ask? Retention. Keeping the volunteers you already have! If you are successful at keeping your volunteers then your recruiting demands will reduce significantly. So, lets look at this - keeping the volunteers you already have and consider the benefits of retention!
When it comes to the "numbers", your church needs enough volunteers to keep your child:volunteer ratios at a safe and effective level. Basically, for nursery you should have one volunteer for every three babies, one for every four toddlers and then one for every age of children - for example for five year olds you should have one for every five children, one for every six, six year olds, etc. This level of staffing allows you to provide a safe and effective children's ministry, so you need to determine how many volunteers you need based on the number and ages of children in your ministry.
So, what are the benefits for keeping the volunteers you have; consider the following -
- It will give you a more stable Children's Ministry since you are not always focused on finding new volunteers.
- It will allow you to have volunteers who develop relationships with children which can span the years - first grade teachers will be the same teachers for siblings and as children grow and move on, they will still see and relate with teachers they had when they were younger.
- You will be freed to focus on equipping and supporting your volunteers when your attention is not always on recruiting.
- You will be able to have new volunteers serve with seasoned volunteers who are able to mentor them.
- Your church will see a more stable Children's Ministry - and so will your community!
- New people will be more interested in getting involved, when the volunteers you have continue to return - it communicates loud and clear, serving in your Children's Ministry is a great place to be!
So, when it comes to recruiting for your Children's Ministry, focus on keeping the volunteers you have!