I would not be where I am at without the help of a myriad of volunteers in my youth ministry. An amazing volunteer will help cover a multitude of a youth minister’s sins but the opposite is also true; a cruddy volunteer will cause a youth minister to have many an elder’s meeting. I thought it would be helpful to give some do’s and don’ts for volunteers in youth ministry. I want to state first that I am so thankful for the many volunteers that have sacrificed their time and money to help in our ministry. Here are some of my jumbled thoughts:
- …try to know the specifics of the activity you have signed up for.
- …ask specifically where your talents could help in the overall aspect of the ministry.
- …your best to have the youth minister’s back when it comes to controversy.
- …speak to the youth minister first if you have an issue with the ministry.
- …develop yourself spiritually so you can be the best example for the teens.
- …study for a class if you are teaching it.
- …ask questions if your role is vague in a certain activity or function.
- …invite families from your work or neighborhood to participate.
- …act like a teenager and try to be the cool volunteer.
- …show favoritism to certain teenagers because they are more “likeable.”
- …talk behind the youth minister’s back or undermine the leadership of the church.
- …show up extremely late for an activity.
- …call or text 15 minutes before an activity saying, “I forgot about the activity—my bad.”
- …study only a couple of minutes for a class saying, “I will let the Spirit speak for me.”
- …put inappropriate material on social media and expect to still volunteer.
- …be alone with a teenager at all. Period.
What are some of the things you would add to this list?