12 Inexpensive Gift Ideas For Your Church’s Volunteers

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Volunteers play such an integral part of every church. The truth is, most churches wouldn’t be able to survive without them. They perform a myriad of roles and allow a church to operate at a lower cost than it otherwise would. Showing appreciation for your volunteers not only makes sense, it’s imperative to keeping well trained and helpful volunteers happily involved in your church’s ministry.

By spending a little money thanking your volunteers, your church can save a lot of money by not having to hire paid employees to fill their roles.

Here’s a list of 12 inexpensive ideas you can do that will go a long ways toward keeping your volunteers feeling appreciated and loved.

1. Verbal Thanks

A simple word of thanks can go a long way. Try visiting all of your volunteer teams this Sunday morning and simply saying “thank you.” While you may think your volunteers know they are appreciated, there’s nothing like hearing it on a more regular basis.

2. Food

Everyone loves food. Surprise your volunteers with a breakfast one morning, a sweet treat at the end of a project, or a volunteer appreciation lunch, etc. It doesn’t have to be a fancy meal, it can be as simple as donuts and juice one morning. The gesture will go a long way toward your volunteers feeling appreciated and loved.

3. Handwritten Cards

Take time to write your ministry's volunteers a note of thanks. The days of handwritten letters are going quickly by the wayside. Take some time out to write a personal thank you note to each of your volunteers. They’ll appreciate you taking the time out of your busy day to acknowledge them.

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4. Public Recognition

Acknowledge your volunteers from the stage. Taking a minute out of your worship service to recognize and thank key volunteers will not only make them feel appreciated and loved on, it will also put them in the well deserved spotlight for a moment - and encourage others to get involved!

5. Social Media Shout-Outs

Highlight your volunteer efforts using your church’s social media channels. Publicly acknowledging your volunteers in this way is both inexpensive and can go a long way.

6. Coffee

Provide good coffee one morning, something more special than the coffee your church normally offers. If your volunteers have been drinking the coffee made in the church kitchen all year long, they will definitely appreciate a morning with gourmet coffee drinks and treats.

7. Weekly Volunteer Spotlights

Highlight an individual volunteer on a weekly basis. Use your church’s communication and social media channels and highlight a specific volunteer and his or her accomplishments, with a story about why they got involved.

8. The Gift Of A Good Book

Does your church love a particular spiritual book? Do you have a book that is usually your go-to gift for people? Consider buying the book in bulk and giving it to each of your volunteers as a way to say thank you.

9. Volunteer Raffles

Create a volunteer raffle. Allow your volunteers to put their names in a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly drawing for a giftcard, free lunch, or some other fun prize.

10. Retreat

Hold a volunteer retreat. This can be anything from a weekend retreat away from your church to a one day retreat on your church campus. Consider bringing in an inspiring speaker, a team building activity, or simply someone to pamper your volunteers like a massage therapist who can give chair massages. Make sure the church leadership takes the time to stop by and say “thank you.” 

11. Congregation Involvement

Ask your congregation to do something special for the volunteers one Sunday. Ask the members of your congregation to hand out flowers, write a note to a particular volunteer they love, or something else little. When done by everyone in the church on the same day, it can have a huge impact.

12. Parents' Night Out

Are a lot of your volunteers also parents? Consider giving them a night off by hosting a Parents’ Night Out and taking care of their children, offering fun activities and games to keep them occupied.

How will you show your volunteers your appreciation this year?

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