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A young woman with curly hair and glasses smiles at her VBS crew during snack time.
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5 Reasons the Best VBS Teams Come Back Every Year

You worked hard to recruit an amazing team of VBS volunteers. How can you ensure they’ll want to join your VBS teams year after year? Maybe you can even recruit your VBS team to help throughout the year!


5 Reasons the Best VBS Teams Come Back Every Year

Invest in their hearts! Here’s how to have motivated, equipped, and passionate volunteers year after year.

1. Celebrate success together.

Once VBS is over, take time to marinate in the wonder of what you just pulled off—together. Tell success stories and share God Sightings. Giggle over minor catastrophes and high-five each other over the way you overcame obstacles. It may not have been perfect, but the fact that your team came together and poured into children is worth celebrating.

2. Rest.

It’s no secret: VBS is a monumental effort of time, energy, and resources. Take a short break to allow your VBS team to recoup, rest, recharge, and not think about ministry for a week or two thrive. You can have your team take time off to get space from church responsibilities. Bring them to training and buy their lunch! Investing in them is investing in the longevity of their service.

3. Train together.

“For a team of volunteers, VBS is a little like a CrossFit workout,” says Jody Brolsma, executive editor and VBS champion for Group Publishing. “It’s a new experience every day. It pushes them beyond their comfort level. It leaves them exhilarated…and exhausted. But it also leaves them stronger and more unified. A training program keeps those ministry muscles primed and ready. Post-VBS training fuels enthusiasm, giving a team practical tools right while the memory of what God did through VBS is still fresh in their hearts.”

4. Value them.

The most successful teams know individually and as a group how important each contribution is—from filling Dixie cups with apple juice to leading large-group time. Solid communication, regular affirmation, reinforcement from God’s Word, and a strong sense of team are all elemental to building a strong and successful team dynamic that lasts far beyond VBS.

5. Show that their work has a huge impact.

It’s no secret that churches are facing challenges with church growth and attendance. VBS is one of the most effective avenues your church has to reach your community. Share success stories, data, and growth. Ensure you communicate all the ways your VBS team reaches your community and makes a difference in people’s lives for Jesus.

Looking for even more great ideas for Vacation Bible School? Check out all our VBS posts.  For loads of great ideas in every issue, subscribe today to Children’s Ministry Magazine.


2 thoughts on “5 Reasons the Best VBS Teams Come Back Every Year

  1. Avatar
    K. E. Freas

    Add to these five reasons why VBS teams return (or don’t), Good Planning and Communication (perhaps as #1). It’s important to treat VBS as a project to be delivered to the children and their families, with all the necessary planning and communication afforded to any project). The product being showing these children the love of Jesus Christ and teaching them (appropriate for their ages) how to show and share that love. Last year, I resigned from a VBS team of which i had been a part for 3 years because of repeated lack of effective planning and communication by leadership that left last minute scrambling to the volunteer team. Makes me sad to no longer have interaction with the kids, but i serve in other missions, that directly or indirectly serve children, and are well-planned.

    • Avatar
      childrensministry.com

      Thank you so much for sharing your perspective! It can be incredibly frustrating when things aren’t well planned or communicated, especially when it leaves the volunteers in a tough spot.

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