What Your Volunteers Secretly Want for Christmas

I recently asked on my Facebook page how leaders appreciate their #kidmin workers and how #kidmin workers like to be appreciated this time of year. You can check out the conversation here (Post by Melissa J. MacDonald).

As you can see there were some great ideas on there. In fact, I’d love if you would add your own ideas to that post as well. I know a few people who are watching closely to glean from you.

You can also go to this pinterest board where I’m collecting volunteer appreciation ideas.

In the busyness of this season don’t forget to make sure your volunteers, your team, knows just how appreciated they are by you. Most volunteers will say they really don’t need or want much. However, I have discovered that regardless of what they say there are at least 3 things your volunteers secretly want for Christmas.

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  1. They want to know they matter.
  2. They want to know they’re making an impact.
  3. They want to know they’re noticed.

Whether you have time to make a craft for each one of your people (I did that one year, 60 snowmen ornaments and 9 years later I can say I’m still not ready to craft again….ever) or have time to write an individual note to each one (have someone on standby to do a hand massage) or have the money to buy everyone a Starbucks gift card (can I get an “amen!”?) make sure you give them the 3 things they really want. It’s amazing how a story of a volunteer’s personal impact can mean more than the nicest gift card and the most beautifully crafted gift.

Think outside the box. Have the kids write the thank you note you include with your bag of candy, tell a victory story of what God’s doing in kid’s ministry in big church as you have your volunteers stand and be recognized, take the time to write an individual note thanking each person and letting them know you spent time praying specifically for them, give hugs and a specific word to each volunteer as you hand out their gift cards, invite them over to your place for dessert and a time of sharing what God’s doing, etc. Go crazy. Just make sure they know they matter, they’re making an impact, and they’re noticed. Be honest, isn’t that what you want too?

Love on those volunteers and then make some hot chocolate and sit still for a half hour just breathing in the wonder and awe of this season and the great love of our God who sent his Son.

Melissa J. MacDonald

Melissa MacDonald, a consecrated worker, spends her time speaking, training, coaching and encouraging churches to “be the Church” for the sake of our next generations.

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