Potlucks: The Meeting Idea Volunteers Will Love

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A potluck is a gathering where each person or group brings a dish of food to be shared.

That’s right, I said potlucks are a great ministry resource. Some churches call this a pitch-in dinner or covered dish supper.   Whatever the name, this could be the key to your next children’s ministry training.
I am at a smaller campus of our church and potlucks fit the informal atmosphere. It just feels right when everybody brings a covered dish and enjoys a time of fellowship.
Typically, when you advertise a training meeting the same 5-10 dedicated volunteers show up who already know everything you are going to discuss—The other 20 who most need to be at that meeting are no-shows.
Last year we had our first Children’s Ministry Potluck. It was held in August right before our children promoted up a grade and our Wednesday night program geared up. I encouraged my volunteers to bring a dish and be ready for a time of fellowship.
At the potluck, I had 80% of my volunteers turn out! Not only was I able to hold an important meeting, but I was also able to fellowship with my volunteers and their families.
I think just the name “potluck” makes meetings sound less threatening and boring. People can take a personal interest in coming by planning what they will bring and being held responsible for bringing those 2-liters! By including families, you are providing an opportunity for the whole family to get out and do something fun that doesn’t cost a lot of money. Potlucks can offer a relaxed environment for you to get to know your volunteers, as well as cover meeting information in a non-boring fashion.
At my Children’s Ministry Potluck, volunteers  were given the meeting agenda and handouts when they arrived. We first spent time eating and fellowshipping, before I took 30 minutes introducing the new year and covering important information. I used my meeting time to talk about upcoming events, discuss new security procedures we had in place, talk about teaching curriculum to our children, and handing out silly awards to volunteers. It was such a successful time that I had volunteers asking if we could do it again in the winter!
If you are a discouraged director with poorly attended meetings, plan a potluck or cook-out and see how many volunteers will come out at the prospect of food. Click here to share your own experience with this kind of event.

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