If you’re relying on the same people to help all the time, it might be time to expand your volunteer horizons. There are people in the pews who would like to get involved in parish adult education, but they don’t come forward for a variety of reasons:
- Some of them aren’t sure what volunteer opportunities are available.
- Some of them don’t know who to ask.
- Some of them are afraid that they will be rejected.
But these problems are easily solved. Start by making a list of volunteer opportunities in adult education for the next year:
- Do you need new idea people for the planning team?
- How about help on the publicity committee?
- Do you need people to help with set up of chairs, microphones, or audio-visual equipment?
- Could you use more hospitality people to be greeters at events?
- Are there ever enough people to bake cookies for events?
- How about people to serve refreshments after the events?
- Maybe volunteers would be willing to baby sit during events?
- Do you have someone to take photos?
- Could you use people to help type, staple, collate, or photocopy?
Your next step is to start running bulletin announcements inviting new people to volunteer. Be very clear in what opportunities are open. Offer to train new volunteers. Assure them that they will be welcome. Suggest that this will be a great opportunity to meet new people and get involved in the parish!
You might also want to produce some handouts that your regular volunteers can use to invite new people to volunteer.
Think also about having a volunteer orientation evening in the fall – not just for adult education volunteers – but for anyone one who wants to get involved in any capacity in the parish.
It will require a little effort, but you won’t be sorry. Reaching out to new volunteers is the best way to keep your parish alive and active!