So You’ve made it through your end of school year celebrations- survived your Easter services, and nailed your Mother’s Day Sunday. Another group of kid’s church kids has successfully graduated up into youth group. Summer is here, ready or not, and soon another season of VBS, camps, outreaches and recruitment will be here and gone. So this may seem like an odd time to be talking about planning your volunteers trainings? It’s not. This is the perfect time to be planning your volunteer trainings for the 2015-2016 season. And here’s why-

A. You already know how important ongoing training is for keeping your kid’s ministry team sharp, up to date and current. Volunteer trainings should never be a “one and done” deal. We should all be growing and learning together always! If you want to make sure your trainings are the best they can be, if you want your trainings to meet the needs of your leaders then you will need to plan ahead, starting NOW to make sure they are done with EXCELLENCE.

B. We KNOW how difficult it can be to get our volunteers to our trainings! Statistics tell us that they need to hear about it 8 separate times in order for your information about that training to break through all the other “white noise of information” we are bombarded with daily. Do NOT plan your trainings last minute. Do not try to advertise your trainings in less than 5 weeks time. I highly suggest you plan out all of your trainings for next year NOW. We do 5-6 volunteer training every school year and put them on a calendar that EVERY volunteer receives at the start of each season. Then they get reminders as we go along.

C. The number 1 complaint of brand new volunteer leaders is usually, “I was not given enough training for the position before I was left by myself.” You will need to plan ahead to have enough variety. You will need to include classes for brand new volunteers to prepare them for the positions they will be serving in. And you need to plan for this NOW if you want to have enough time to advertise and work to get your new recruits THERE.

D. We have never had a lot of luck with doing summer volunteer trainings. For us, it is just the nature of the beast living in the north. As soon as the summer hits, people are gone, gone, gone. So summer is the perfect time to PLAN for the most amazing volunteer trainings for the school year- right now, you have 3 months to make sure that your 5-6 volunteer trainings during the school year are the best, most fruitful and highest attended they have ever been!

E. If you are bringing in outside speakers for your training, that should NOT be done last minute. If you decide that you would like to do a training on special needs kid’s ministry, and you would like to bring in an expert to give tips to your leaders, this summer would be the time to start contacting people and asking about their availability. Get the best talent locked in NOW to come speak for your leaders; don’t make your quality speakers an afterthought (they will be busy!).

F. Topics for trainings should not be picked flippantly. Nor should you just do the ones you always have. The needs of your leaders will change just as the needs of your children and families will change. Take the time right now to pray, talk with your lead pastor and other children’s pastors- what are the key issues your volunteers need training and equipping in RIGHT NOW? Special needs kids ministry? Death and Divorce Care? Equipping Families? Recruitment? Self-devotions? Early Childhood? Dynamic Kid’s Worship? Creative Large Group? Positive Classroom Discipline? Choose carefully and prayerfully!

G. Church calendars fill up FAST. Get your plans on that calendar NOW. You may even have other departments of the church who may wish to attend some of those trainings with you!

You can probably tell that I am passionate about training our kids and family ministry leaders! In a week here I am leaving for a whole summer of ministry traveling to a LOT of states and a LOT of churches doing trainings and speaking at Bible Camps etc. I can’t wait! But when fall hits, I will be traveling full time doing trainings like the ones described above. Are you interested in having me do a training for your leaders at YOUR church this next school year? The perfect time to message me is ….you guessed it, this summer- pastortrisha@gmail.com or trisha@peach.im. I’d love to do a training at your church for your leaders on the topics that you are interested in the MOST. Let’s chat.

Have fun planning those trainings and happy summer everyone! Pastor Trisha

Every ministry leader needs to be effective at managing change or they won’t last long in todays culture.  This book provides practical concepts for innovating change in children’s ministry. Trisha has consulted our children’s ministry department with her concepts and helped us successfully navigate several areas of ministry change. We are grateful for the insights she shares in this book!
Bob Griffith
Executive Pastor of Family Ministries
Journey Church, Kenosha WI
www.ourjourneychurch.combooking2
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