SHORT-TERM MISSIONS 2017 PLANNING GUIDE
for Congregations in the U.S. & Canada
Ready to partner with Kingdom Workers in 2017? Request Kingdom Workers volunteers through this form.
- • Christians personally showing love and concern for the community through service outreach projects.
- • Volunteers serving alongside local church members and building long-term relationships.
- • Christians sharing the saving message with the people they meet.
- The kingdom of God benefits in all of the ways cited above and more. Working through the gospel, the Spirit initiates and reinforces that amazing, grace-filled blessing called faith.
by creating a caring, personal presence in the community, representing Christ and the congregation positively,
by developing relationships with unchurched individuals and families, and
by providing encouragement and a loving example to all congregations in their ministry of outreach.
1. Congregation develops a plan for use of Kingdom Workers volunteers including follow-up and assessment of long-term outcome.
2. Congregation/ministry submit the Volunteer Request Form to Kingdom Workers.
- 3. Kingdom Workers will review ministry plans, budget, and acknowledge acceptance or refusal. (For WELS congregations, Kingdom Workers will share all requests with the appropriate district mission board chairman.)
NOTE: Congregations should plan on a calendar-year basis when requesting volunteers (see request deadline dates below).
Volunteers are willing to help with a variety of projects. Projects occur throughout the year and could include activities like refugee outreach, sports Bible camps, vacation Bible school, Spanish-speaking outreach, Senior ministry, and Family ministry.
- • October 21, 2016 - deadline for short-term spring projects
- • January 9, 2017 - deadline for short-term summer projects
- • April 24, 2017 - deadline for short-term fall/winter projects
- Need long-term volunteers (5+ weeks)? Submit request six months before volunteers are needed on site.
*Please note, early submission allows more time for recruitment and volunteer fundraising!
$150 program fee per volunteer due to Kingdom Workers one month prior to team arrival. (This financial responsibility will be waived for congregations that are mission/exploratory status.)
Long-term volunteers (5+ weeks) - Congregations can choose to provide a stipend directly to the volunteers if they wish. The funds will no longer be processed through Kingdom Workers. Please let Kingdom Workers know if your congregation would like to provide a stipend and for what amount in the initial Volunteer Request.
- •Congregations/ministries in the same region could also choose to share a team.
Congregation/ministry will provide housing (including utilities and meals): Consider food, environmental, and pet allergies when securing housing. Kingdom. Workers will gather allergy and medical information from volunteers and share as needed.
Local church members are expected to be involved with the project alongside the Kingdom Workers volunteers.
Must have a general liabilities coverage in place
Provide local transportation (this includes to and from the airport) or cover fuel expense if volunteer uses their personal vehicle while on site
Pre-service contact with volunteers – congregations are asked to connect with volunteers either individually or as a team to share information about the outreach project(s), an overview of the community, and other information that helps the volunteers prepare to serve.
The pastor is required to submit a final report (Team Activity Report and Feedback Form) within 30 days to help Kingdom Workers continuously assess and improve project impact.
Sharing Updates – Volunteers and congregations are expected to share their outreach experience with Kingdom Workers. For one-week opportunities, we encourage the pastor to meet with the volunteers on the final night of service to share and record stories about people they met and served. For opportunities longer than a week, we recommend that the pastor meets with the volunteers on a weekly basis to record impact stories about people they are serving. The stories, along with pictures and video, will be shared through Kingdom Workers’ blog and social media posts, as well as print pieces. This will serve to encourage others to become involved and support our ministry. Kingdom Workers will provide the guidelines prior to the team’s arrival.
GOOD PLANNING AND COMMUNICATION ARE ESSENTIAL
Congregations/ministries cannot begin planning an outreach project too soon. Here are some essential points to help you.
• Early planning provides Kingdom Workers adequate time to recruit volunteers, allows volunteers time for fundraising, and allows the congregation to better prepare the mission project.
• be creative and organized
• delegate necessary work/member involvement
• communicate expectations clearly to the congregation/ministry and your volunteers
• be flexible in exercising the plan
• follow the four “c’s” – Communicate, Commitment, Collaboration, and Christ-Centered
IMPORTANT INFORMATION WHEN PLANNING YOUR REQUEST
An ideal number for a typical team is two to four volunteers, but not exclusively held to that number.
High school-aged volunteers require an adult chaperone. The chaperone is also expected to participate and would qualify as a volunteer.
The congregation should prepare the project schedule in advance.
Kingdom Workers volunteers are encouraged to use their gifts to serve at least six hours a day – five days a week. This includes preparation for the outreach project.
We encourage you to join the Kingdom Workers volunteers in daily Bible studies and reflection while they are on site.
Prepare for pre-trip communication with the Kingdom Workers team either through email, phone calls, or a team teleconference call.
- • Provide any project information/curriculum to the volunteers to help them prepare in advance
For all projects, members also must directly participate with the Kingdom Workers team(s). The church members are better suited to develop long-term relationships with new contacts. Volunteers are simply there to assist alongside.
Congregations are encouraged to develop print media and promotional material to reach out to the community as part of the mission project.
We encourage scheduling volunteers to arrive on a Saturday and depart on a Monday. This allows them to participate in multiple church services and connect with people they met during the mission project who might be attending church for the first time. (The volunteer schedule and flight availability could be determining factors.)
OVERVIEW OF A TYPICAL SERVICE OUTREACH PROJECT
Member(s)/committee should be assigned to coordinate all the local planning and implementation of the event and follow-up. Arrangements will need to be made well in advance of the team’s arrival. Work needs to be done in all these areas:
- • Transportation - provide transportation for volunteer(s) while in the community
• Lodging - solicit host families
• Meals - provide meals for Kingdom Workers volunteer(s)
• Print media - prepare and package brochures, other media
• Promotion - send or call in news releases to local media
• Logistics - secure permits, preview areas, buy supplies
• Follow up – the congregation should prepare a long-term follow-up plan. If canvassing, prospects should be given immediate attention by the pastor and his evangelism committee. They may also consider a telephone follow-up program by members, or a series of follow-up calls made by the current Kingdom Workers team. If hosting a VBS, decide how you will reach out to the families who sent their children to participate.
The congregation’s members are expected to be involved at every level, including joining the volunteers’ outreach efforts.
At the end of the project, we encourage you to schedule a team reflection before the volunteers leave to talk about their experience. Help them apply what they learned to their service outreach at home.
Once Kingdom Workers has secured your volunteer(s)
Contact each volunteer (information supplied by Kingdom Workers) and encourage regular communication.
Provide volunteers with the following:
1. Work responsibilities
2. Outreach training provided by congregation
3. Profile of congregation and community
4. Appropriate attire for the event(s) and area climate
5.Host family information
90 DAYS BEFORE VOLUNTEER ARRIVAL (WHERE APPLICABLE)
Travel: Visiting volunteers will arrange their own transportation. If flying, a pre-arranged airport pick-up time will be requested to help streamline arrival of volunteers. Kingdom Workers will provide travel information to the volunteers once the churches determine the specific schedule.
NOTE: Leased vans or rental cars must only be driven by someone 25 years or older.
Housing - Normally the volunteers will be staying with host families. The usual arrangement is for a pair of volunteers of the same gender per host family. It is never too soon for the congregation to seek commitments from members to host volunteers. The pastor and his family should not feel obligated to house the volunteers.
Note:Kingdom Workers will be sending a Host Family Agreement Form to the congregation.
Meals - The congregation is responsible for all meals while volunteers are on site. We encourage host families and other members to be involved in this area.
Print media and promotion - Final decisions in both areas need to be made at this time.
Logistics -Check local ordinances to determine if there are any regulations pertaining to your outreach event. Any necessary permits should be secured. Secure and purchase the necessary materials pertaining to your outreach project.
60 DAYS BEFORE volunteer ARRIVAL (WHERE APPLICABLE)
Transportation - All travel arrangements should be finalized.
Housing- Share with volunteers, if recruited.
Meals - Basic decisions on meals should be finalized.
Additional activities–be sure to finalize plans if there is a free day
Print media - Brochures should be finished by this time.
Promotion - Preparation of mass mailings, if used, ought to be nearing completion. Are news releases ready for local media?
Logistics - Have you checked on local ordinances and secured necessary permits? If canvassing, areas should be previewed thoroughly and, if needed, maps adjusted accordingly. Any materials needed for the particular project should be secured.
30 DAYS BEFORE Volunteer ARRIVAL (WHERE APPLICABLE)
Transportation, housing, meals - Final arrangements should be made at this time.
Communications - Communicate with volunteers and continue until arrival.
Print media - Samples of all materials should be in the hands of the congregation. Brochures should be packaged in door hanger bags.
Promotion - All news releases should be in the hands of local media.
Logistics - If necessary, local police should be informed of a project at least two weeks in advance. Any necessary permits should be secured.
Connect with the Kingdom Workers volunteers either through email, phone, social mediaor a team teleconference call to prepare them for the mission project
Kingdom Workers Volunteer Management Team
Laura Harstad, CVA
Director of Volunteer Management
Joyce Beglinger, CVA
KINGDOM WORKERS USA & CANADA FIELD MANAGER
Kristi Sebald, CVA
*CVA: Certified Volunteer Administrator
WE’RE HERE FOR YOU!
Kingdom Workers requires a recommendation from the pastor for each volunteer. However, we are all imperfect human beings. Should your volunteer exhibit behavior that is not appropriate while serving the congregation or living with their host family, please do not hesitate to contact the volunteer management team at our office (414-771-6848). Partnering with you, we will determine the best and most appropriate course of action to take.
Our volunteers serve as representatives of your congregation and community, their home congregations, Kingdom Workers, and, most important, our Lord. As such, their actions will reflect their love for Christ and the people they serve.